Watching Generation

Cindrella Prakash Asher   |   March 23, 2015 

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I have this expressive, loving, fun, ballerina girlfriend – Varsha Anand. She’s 8 and lights up when I call her my BFF. I always mean it. She calls me Ca-za. This girl has the liberty to walk over me, wake me up in the morning (I usually absolutely hate the person who does that), sit on my lap and fill my purview with nothing but her pretty face and make me dance to her tunes. Not only does she know all this but, in fact, she uses this liberty almost always. And I totally cherish it!

The other day, I was at the family's dinner table hurriedly gobbling lunch as Varsha’s parents and her brother were busily trying to pack and leave for a church event. Even as I was eating, Varsha was my companion, kissing me, playing with my arm fat, talking to me, etc.  Apart from making me conscious of how much weight I need to lose, she kept me company. Or that’s what I thought.

Let me confess, I have, like my mom used to say, “cat eyes.” It means that I have big eyes but a relatively smaller tummy, and so I often take more food than I can eat. Over the last few years, I have intentionally tried to change that, but I have days I fail. This was one such day. I had eaten ‘enough’ and so I went to the dust bin to throw away the little rice that I simply could not finish.

Oh, and yes, I eat rice. I am Tamil, rice runs in my blood.

Varsha tip-toed towards me and said, “Ca-za is wasting food . . . Ca-za is wasting food, so even I can.”

I stopped in my tracks.

Later, her mother told me that recently, in school, there was a fight. Varsha was present then, too, her voice was controlled, her words thoughtfully chosen, her speech slow, her hands moving in the air while she spoke, trying to resolve the issue. It seems she behaved exactly like me (not that I’m always wise like that . . . just sometimes).

Another weekend, I stayed over at Varsha’s place. I’m fashion foolish, so I wore football shorts, t-shirt, dancing heels, and waltzed around the house. That same night, after I left, Varsha wore the same clothes – football shorts, and all. Her mum sent me a picture of her and we giggled, fondly calling her my clone.

Joshua Generation. Dancing Generation . . . and now, watching generation.

1 Corinthians 11:1, "Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ," is a verse written centuries back by a radically transformed man, Paul, which stands relevant even for our here and now.

You see, the next generation is not always one that’s waiting for sermons or talks. It’s not a generation that’s looking at books, they hunger for visual content. They are not starved for examples to follow, but they are deprived of good lives to imitate. They are seeking a character, a behaviour, a heart. What our lectures cannot do, one simple gesture may.

And that’s exactly where we can and must display Christ. A hopeful disposition in the face of a denied promotion at work, a cheerful demeanour in the face of lack of recognition/credit/admissions into our favorite university, an identity that’s not derived from our salary, designation, job, qualifications, single or married status - but from the cross of Christ, a charm that only daily renewal by the Gospel can bring . . . these are the trinkets that we need to boldly put on display. This is the core that actually has the potential to percolate down to every generation.

The Gospel - forever the same yet constantly renewing.

The Gospel – old reality that penetrates into our daily lives.

The Gospel – for the world, for the nations, for the city, for me and for you.

The Gospel – This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. (John 3:16 MSG)

"The character of Jesus has not only been the highest pattern of virtue, but the strongest incentive in its practice, and has exerted so deep an influence, that it may be truly said that the simple record of three years of active life has done more to regenerate and to soften mankind than all the disquisitions of philosophers and all the exhortations of moralists."  W.E.H Lecky

I suggest we put on our high heels, slap on some lipstick, dress in our best and accept this challenge! Let us show the next generation that Christ changes us from the inside out. Let us be the generation that apologizes, confesses, repents and keeps getting relevant through the power of the cross.  Let us be the ever-renewing generation for the watching generation.

Leaving you with this quote that comforts me –

“Our God is the God of the destiny and the journey.” Anand Mahadevan, Varsha’s dad and my Pastor

Photo Credit: Unsplash

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Cindrella Prakash Asher

Cindrella is married to a rock star, belongs to New City Church and works in a Public Relations firm in Bombay. She loves the old world charm of her city and refuses to call it Mumbai. She loves writing, making and listening to music and is a big foodie.

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