Where does God Live?
As a child, I always had this question which I used to ask my
Mom, “Where does God live?”. She would smile, point towards the sky, caress my
hair and say, “God lives in heaven”.

Every weekend, as she used to walk me across to the temple, I
used to wonder, if God lives in heaven, why is she taking me here. As I grew up
to respect all faiths, because my mother insisted that I go to the Church, the
Mosques, this question still remained unanswered for me.
As I started reading all the scriptures, I came across what the Apostle
Paul had written, “Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the
Spirit of God dwells in you?”. It was then that I realized that God does not
live in heaven; he lives inside his people, in our bodies, in our minds, in our
souls.
When I imagine God, no picture comes to my mind. I can’t see him
as Krishna with the Sudarshan Chakra in his hand, or as Jesus hanging on the
cross. I see God as the Creator, a tiny structure, the infinite, who has chosen
to make his home in our hearts. I cannot imagine my Creator to be contained in
a physical building. He lives in me.
I would share a dialog between two believers. I came across this
somewhere and it really touched me to the core of my heart.
 “Where do you go to church?”
“Faith Community, down on the corner.”
“Oh, the little white one? I love the gardens out front.”
“Yeah, it could really use a new paint job, though.”

As we read the dialogue, we can understand that the first person
is asking the second person, where he goes to Church, to which the second
replies and the conversation shifts to the details of the building referred to.
As I read the dialogue again and again, I am compelled to think
whether the building which became the point of discussion, was the real meaning
of church. The Greek word, “Ekklesia” from which the English word “Church” has
been derived, does not mean a building at all. It just means an assembly,
i.e. it would mean the assembly of the believers and not the building.  
Let us understand the true meaning of the terms used for these
places of worship and not get unduly carried away by the insensible acts of a
few miscreants, who vandalize a church, or desecrate the idol of a goddess, or
bring down a mosque. I strongly believe that the misguided few who do this, are not the “church”
or the “temple” or the “mosque”.
We just need to understand that the true church (house of God) is
the believers who gather.

I share the words of Solomon from the 1 Kings 8:27 commentaries of the Bible, “But will God indeed dwell on the earth? Behold
heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain you. How much less this temple
which I have built!”. Let us read it again and again and be amazed.
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My review of my first Uber Cab ride in Mumbai
It was earlier this week, on
Tuesday to be precise, that my parents, who had come down to stay with us for
over a month, were leaving back to their village in Kerala. And as luck would
have it, Monday evening we all went out for a family dinner and while returning
my car broke down. Calling up the service centre to tow away the vehicle and
hitching up a bumpy ride in the kaali-peeli autorickshaws that ply by the
millions on the Mumbai roads, by the time we reached home, rather than enjoying
the fine-dining cuisine that we had, my elderly parents were exhausted to the
hilt.
As I was sitting on the bed,
wondering what to do to drop my parents to the railway station the next
morning, I was contemplating on calling up some friends and requesting them to
lend me their car for a day. Being a working day, when all of them travel to
work, and their cars already booked, I was perplexed.
That’s when my eyes lay on the
tiny little article on radio taxi services in a remote corner of the newspaper.
As I picked up the newspaper to read it, I had no clue as to which one to book
and how to ensure that I get a smooth and amazing ride for my parents. Many
names flashed before my eyes and to be honest, Uber did come across my mind and
I immediately discarded it having heard of only the negative sense after the
unfortunate incident involving one of their drivers in Delhi which had resulted
in the cab service being discontinued in the capital city.
However, it’s either common sense
or whether better sense, I am not aware, which prevailed upon me and I decided
to do a fast google search on the Uber cab service in my city. And lo and
behold, I found that it was as easy as anything.
Within seconds, I downloaded the
Uber App on my smart phone and registered myself. As I was doing it, my elder
daughter came across to the room and immediately suggested that if an existing
user gives me a reference code, I would get a Rs.600/- credit to my account.
She also immediately recollected that once she along with a few friends had
used this service and she had a promotion code available. Further ahead, my
tech-savvy daughter took over the reins and before I could blink my eyelids,
she had completed the process and registering me.
The next morning, a bit tensed as
I was, being a first time user, I panicked and booked a cab around an hour
before our scheduled departure. As I called the driver, whose vehicle number,
and his mobile contact was flashed on the App, I was warmly greeted by a good
morning and when I mentioned to him that I need to have the vehicle at my place
in an hour, the driver immediately intimated me that I need to book only around
15-20 minutes in advance. He was also gracious enough to guide me that I need
to cancel my booking immediately or else the system would debit the
cancellation charges to my account.
Some panicky moments thereafter
for me, as I realized that no cabs were available for booking when suddenly
this vehicle pooped up on my screen. I went ahead with the normal routine and
as I called the driver for providing him my exact co-ordinates, he informed me
that the vehicle would be at my doorstep in around 15 minutes. And surely there
it was there, dot in 15 minutes, the vehicle landed.
The look of the vehicle, the way
it was maintained itself, impressed me a lot and as the driver got down and
wished me, he ensured that he would help me load all the baggage conveniently
into the vehicle. And as we sat in the vehicle, the driver individually wished
each one of the passengers before politely asking me whether he can start the
journey by clicking on the GPS enabled phone loaded on to the dashboard.. (Yeah! Shiv was his name, driving an UberBlack). As I nodded in
agreement, and he did, an immediate message popped up on my phone indicating
the commencement of my journey.
The one gesture on the part of
the driver which touched my heart immediately before he started the vehicle was
something I can never forget. He turned back, looked at each of us, and folded
his hands in submission and apologized for the unfortunate incident in Delhi,
about which I had just mentioned earlier, and which had honestly made me a bit
jittery in choosing this service. As I shook my head in acceptance, he added,
“Thank you so much for showing your trust in Uber!”
I would have traded anything in
the world that day for that little gesture on the part of the company.
Nevertheless, the driver gave us some suggestions too. Being a slightly chilly
early morning, he suggested that we keep the heater on for a while before
switching on to the cooling air conditioner. After a while, when my Dad
suggested that he keeps the windows open, he obliged for sure, but within a few
kilometers, suggested again, that keeping the windows open would tire us out
and hence, it would be better to switch on the air conditioner.
Absolutely polite and decent,
throughout the entire journey, the driver made sure with his experience that we
maneuvered the morning city traffic well so that we reach our destination much
earlier than I had honestly anticipated. As he helped us get out our luggage,
he intimated me what the ride has cost me and immediately adding that the
amount that would be debited from my account would be 20% less, being the
promotional offer for the first ride.
As we disembarked, the driver
came out and again with folded hands, wished us a very happy and safe journey
and as he rode away leaving behind fond memories of our first ever Uber ride, I
instantly reached out for my mobile phone and give him the much deserved 5
stars ranking.
To sum, it up, it was an amazing
and wonderful experience and I am overwhelmed by the service of my first ever
luxury ride with Uber.
The Pros that I can sum up…
1.       Absolutely
easy and hassle free booking.
2.       Availability
within short time.
3.       No
hassles of any cash payment.
4.       Friendly
and polite staff.
5.       Absolutely
well maintained vehicle.
6.       Cheap
and affordable luxury travel.
7.       Immediate
intimation of the fare and its breakup over phone and email.
The Cons that I would be able to
conjure up with great difficulty would be…
(Hey! Mind you, these are not
drawbacks, but some features that I would like the company to incorporate in
their amazing service)
1.       Not
having the option to choose the vehicle you want (the vehicle that is nearest
to our location is to be booked).
2.       Availability
of the option to choose the kind of service that I want (when I booked, it
showed that only UberBlack was available and not UberX)
I would surely be recommending
the Uber service to all my friends and acquaintances and also shall be
soliciting their services many more times in days to come.  In a city full of potholes and traffic jams,
when we really need a comfortable ride, it becomes hard to find one and Uber is
surely destined to remedy that.
I would rank them on top when it
comes to ease and luxury where you just need to tap your smart phone a couple
to times to order a ride in a premium sedan and not even be bothered of change
and cash payments, where the fee is automatically charged to your prepaid
account.
Just a small bit of advice that I
have is when the Company terms the luxury ride as UberBlack, I would suggest
that it uses black colored sedans only to make the rider feel like a limousine
ride.

All in all, I would give the Uber
cab service in Mumbai a ranking of 10 on 10 (10/10).

So go ahead and indulge in a
super luxury ride, download the Uber APP today. For more details, check out
their website at https://www.uber.com or for
more specific Mumbai ride, directly go to https://www.uber.com/cities/mumbai
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How I would propose to my crush, my love, my wife, on this Valentine’s Day!
It’s over 20 years that I first
and ever proposed and fortunately or unfortunately got married to my
commitment. Yeah! When I say, unfortunately, it’s because I had planned of
several zany and uncanny ways to propose to her and unfortunately could get the
opportunity to use only one of them.
And believe me; it was quite
simple at that time. I had tried to be a bit poetic and viola! She fell for it.
It had taken me around a week to compile the lyrics of the sonnet dedicated to
her. And I had made sure that I included a wee bit of everything in the poem.
So it had my memories with her till then, the inside jokes, the turning points
in our relationship and of course, a few rhyming words. Or did it rhyme? I
honestly don’t know, but what was important that she felt me rhyming for her.
So there it was, I just could use
only one of the  various arms, I had saved up my armor and I was booked for ever.
Oh! How much I feel like redoing
it all over again, every single year. Yeah, I still do it. I try to say it with
flowers. The usual drill at unusual locales is what it comes to every year.
Sometimes below the pillow, the sometimes on the bed, sometimes in the bathtub
and sometimes even in her slippers, is how I have been surprising her.
Yeah, 20 years is a pretty long
time and our relationship has bonded over the years. And twenty years is quite
apt an occasion to re-do it all over again. And certainly the occasion which
gives me the opportunity for me to put one or more of the other zany ways to
use.
And so, here I am, going to
propose to my crush, my wife, my companion for 20 years, in the ups and downs
of my life, this Velentine’s day. And I am going to make it really special for
her and for me.
And as if Mother Nature is
helping me in my endeavor, it’s quite chillier than usual this year in my city.
Believe me, a chilly February is an absolutely amazing month to snuggle and coo
under the covers and get in to bed for an early night retreat.
I would need a bit of preparation
for the big event, and I would need a bit of a planning too. And I need to
ensure that my beloved goes out of home on the previous day to enable my stage
setting. And once I am through with it, I am ready to sweep her out of her feet
that night.
So here’s my plan. The moment I
kiss her my goodnight and switch off the lights (she is certainly going to
wonder, why I am in such a hurry to do so!), her eyes would fall on the
ceiling. And Lo and Viola!, it would be the letters, “Love you honey, will you
marry me again” perched up there. That’s what I had tirelessly put up there
with letters cut from glow-in-the-dark paper.
And that won’t be just there to
make her drool over me. The wonderful letters hand crafted by me would be
surrounded with lots and lots of stars. I would make it look like a clear and
starry night and we both lying down under the sky, she holding on to me and
staring at the constellation proposal up in the sky.
And as I see the nod of
acceptance in her eyes, and she speaks the proverbial words, “Yes, I would”, I
would put her down again, this time her head hitting something really hard on
her pillow, and there she would find the proposal ring, in a box, as beautiful
as her, as if the love fairy had listened to us and left it there.
And if you think you can dare to
play cupid, just visit http://cupidgames.closeup.in/ and dare to play the game.

This Blog Post is written for the Cupid Games 2015 activity
for Indiblogger at https://www.indiblogger.in/happyhours/cupid-games-2015
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