Malankara World

Today with Jesus

Importance of Relationships

by Rev. Fr. V.V. Paulose, Toronto, Canada

Today's Bible Verse

“We should keep on encouraging each other to be thoughtful and to do helpful things.” ( Hebrews (10:24)

Discussion

We are connected with everyone and everything otherwise we are dead. Isn’t it?

All living organisms are interconnected and interrelated.

Life is a chain of cycle connected with the source of life- God. ‘I’m the way and the truth and the life.” (John 14:6) "For apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5)

We are community beings. Humans strive for community. This yearning should be cultivated. We are product of relationships. “The health of a society is determined by the health of those relationships, not the extent of which it maximizes individual choice,” writes David brooks.

The studies in inner mind, the seat of emotions, and unconscious mind highlight the invisible bonds between people. If the outer mind hungers for status, money and applause, the inner mind hungers for harmony and connection. In those moments when self consciousness fades away and a person is lost in challenging a cause, the love of another or the love of God.

Community life is Oxytocin (Hormone that helps mammals bond). It is the nature’s way of weaving people together. We should lament for the thinning of connections, associations and affiliations these days. The web of relationships, connecting people together, has lost their power. Nietzsche taught: “He who has a why to like for, can bear with almost any how”

This is a true story of two great friends: A baby hippopotamus named Owen and a 130- year old giant tortoise named Mzee. In the great tsunami in 2004, the baby hippo was separated from its mother and stranded on a sandy coral reef among the sea grass and saved by the fishermen in Kenya. It was towed towards Haller Park near the city of Mombasa. The manger of the park, Dr Paula, chose a part of the park that had a pond and mud wallow as well as tall trees and brush, everything a hippo wants. There was a 130 year old tortoise named MZEE- means “WISE OLD MAN”.

Owen crouched behind Mzee. The baby hippos often hide behind their mothers for protection. Mzee began to accept his new companion. Later Owen was snuggled up against Mzee. Bit by bit, Mzee grew friendlier. The care takers noticed later Owen feeding right beside Mzee, as if Mzee were showing him how to eat. It was clear that the bond between Owen and Mzee was helping the baby hippo to recover from his separation from his mother and the stranding in the sea. At last they became inseparable. Now they swim together, eat together, drink together, and sleep next to each other. They rub noses. A sense of trust has grown between them.

Wildlife experts are still puzzled about how this unlikely friendship came to be. Most have never heard of a mammal and a reptile forming such a strong bond. Science can’t always explain what the heart already knows: our most important friends are sometimes those we least expected. Owen suffered a great loss. But with the help of many caring people, he could start a new happy life. In this transition, Mzee played a big pivotal role. What matters is that Owen isn’t alone- and neither is Mzee.

This reminds us all that even though terrible, unexpected things happen, the power of courage, love, and the preciousness of life will prevail. ”If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it, and if one part is honored, all the parts are glad.” ( 1 Corinthians 12:26)

Prayer

Jesus, let us connect to each other, husbands and wives, children and parents, church and church members and the society at large and with the nature in relation with you. Let the wounds of separation be healed by reconciliation and communication. The enmity and war between nations be ended. Let us feel as one family. Let your spirit of connectedness stimulate the flow the life blood of relationships. All we ask in the name of Jesus. Amen.

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