Wealth from God – Wealth for God

Beberapa tahun yang lalu, gue punya ketakutan yang buat beberapa orang lain sounds ridiculous. Simply said – gue takut kaya. Yup, gue takut jadi orang kaya. For some reason, gue selalu percaya bahwa Tuhan akan memberkati hidup gue, tapi gue takut akan berkat-berkat itu.

Why?

Dalam hidup gue, gue banyak ngelihat orang-orang kaya yang hidupnya sepertinya sangat jauh dari Tuhan. Gue banyak ngelihat orang-orang  yang – kadang gak usah terlalu kaya, tapi dengan “punya” harta dalam jumlah tertentu aja udah memperlihatkan attitude yang bikin gue gak napsu banget buat jadi seperti mereka. And many of them are close-related people around me. Baru punya ngga seberapa aja kelakuannya udah sangat gak sensitive terhadap orang-orang yang “kurang beruntung”  dibandingkan mereka. Gue percaya bahwa the real life test bukan pada saat mereka ngga berdaya dan ngga punya apa-apa, tapi justru waktu mereka udah punya uang banyak dan power besar dalam hidup mereka. Waktu mereka ngga punya apa-apa, mereka ngga bisa berbuat banyak. Tapi waktu mereka sudah punya banyak dalam hidup mereka, what they do with their wealth and power shows their quality. Dan jujurnya melihat hidup mereka banyak mengecewakan gue.

Hal kedua yang bikin gue takut jadi orang kaya, adalah karena melihat anak-anak mereka. Oh my God, yang ini bener-bener bikin gue ngerasa sedih. Banyak dari para senior kita yang kaya karena mereka kerja keras dan benar-benar tough menghadapi kehidupan. Tapi look at their children. Ini sedikit complain, itu sedikit ngomel. Mereka sangat dibelenggu oleh comfort zone yang memanjakan hidup mereka, sehingga mereka ngga lagi tough seperti orang tua mereka yang banting tulang dari sejak sangat muda, sampai sekarang jadi orang kaya yang strong and punya prinsip kuat. Gimana mereka bisa jadi orang yang peka terhadap sesama kalo mereka ngga pernah ngerasain hidup susah. Well, ngga usah hidup susah kali ya, tapi at least berhubungan sama orang-orang yang miskin dan menderita aja seringkali ngga mau. Iya sih banyak dari mereka yang complain ini itu dan bilang hidupnya susah, tapi complain-nya bukan karena ngga bisa makan, tapi karena laptop-nya rusak, atau karena ngga dapet tiket buat jalan-jalan ke Europe. Hmm, ada yg bilang ke gue kalo ini yang namanya suffering in comfort.

Anyway, gue ngga mau menghakimi siapa-siapa – en bukan maksud gue nulis ini untuk menghakimi. Mungkin mereka punya life struggle yang gue ngga pernah tau. So God have mercy on me.

Beberapa tahun terakhir ini Tuhan banyak merubah pandangan gue tentang kekayaan, lewat orang-orang kaya yang baik – really good rich people – Godly rich people.

Lewat kerjaan demi kerjaan, dan pelayanan demi pelayanan, Tuhan bawa gue untuk ketemu banyak sekali orang-orang di kebun anggurNya – yang kaya raya….:-) And yes, ada beberapa dari mereka yang membuat gue sangat sedih karena attitude dan kelakuan mereka. Tapi ada banyak juga yang baik, ada banyak juga yang rendah hati, ada banyak juga yang memberkati hidup gue, dan bahkan Tuhan pakai untuk memulihkan hati dan hidup gue.

Lewat orang-orang ini gue belajar bahwa kekayaan adalah kemurahan yang Tuhan berikan supaya kita juga bisa bermurah hati kepada sesama, lewat karya-karya penginjilan dan bantuan buat yang susah dan menderita.

And yang sungguh amazing adalah bagaimana mereka punya hati yang begitu besar untuk berbagi kekayaan mereka buat Gereja. Yes, they are amazing givers! Mereka mendapatkan kekayaan yang luar biasa berlimpah dari Tuhan, tapi mereka juga memberi luar biasa berlimpah buat Gereja en sesama. Even more amazing than the amount they give, is that they give away their abundant money with abundant joy! Yes, they are also joyful givers! 

Ada yang bilang bahwa terang aja mereka berbagi banyak, ya mereka udah kaya pastilah bisa kasih banyak. Nah kalo gue kan tiap bulan idup aja masih pas-pasan, gimana mau berbagi? Hmm… ngga juga sih. Gue banyak ngobrol sama orang-orang yang financially diberkati Tuhan luar biasa ini, dan gue nemuin bahwa mereka sudah punya kebiasaan – bahkan komitmen – untuk memberi dengan sangat murah hati sejak mereka masih gak punya uang dalam hidup mereka.

Seorang Tante yang sangat murah hati bercerita bahwa waktu dia masih kuliah, dia sering membuka rumahnya buat anak-anak kampus berkumpul dan berdoa, dan dia selalu menyediakan makanan dan macem-macem sarana supaya anak-anak ini betah ngumpul. Padahal saat itu dia bilang dia masih miskin, tapi dari waktu ke waktu Tuhan selalu berkati hidup dia sehingga dia bisa berbagi dengan yang lain. Semakin dia banyak berbagi, semakin dia ngalamin penyertaan dan berkat Tuhan dalam hidupnya. Hari ini dia banyak sekali berbagi buat karya-karya di keuskupannya. Gosh, I was so blessed meeting with her.

Seorang Oom cerita waktu usahanya hutang ke bank sangat sangat besar – lebih dari 11 digit rupiah, dia ngalamin belaskasih Tuhan yang luar biasa. Saat dia ada dana untuk mencicil hutangnya, eh dia malah dengar Tuhan suruh dia sumbang uangnya ke pelayanan Gereja. So dengan hati yang taat, sejumlah uang yang bisa dipakai buat beli rumah mewah itu, semuanya dia kasih buat pelayanan. Dengan hutang lebih dari 11 digit rupiah itu, pengusaha lain siap dengan 2-3 macam pembukuan (1 buat shareholder, 1 buat petugas pajak, 1 buat internal), tapi Oom ini memilih untuk hidup jujur di hadapan Tuhan dan bertahan dengan 1 pembukuan yang asli. Hmm…yang ini membuat gue berpikir. Luar biasa ya, sementara orang lain akan kabur atau berusaha membuat laporan palsu, Oom ini berpegang pada firman Tuhan dan terus belajar taat. Hari ini, usahanya sudah bebas dari hutang, hidupnya diberkati Tuhan luar biasa, dan beliau banyak dipakai Tuhan untuk mobilisasi dana bagi perluasan kerajaan Allah. Oom yang satu ini sungguh memberkati gue dengan his fatherly wisdom. Again, what a blessing for me to know him.

Ada lagi yang lain. Seorang Bapak in his forties. Waktu ketemu dia, first impression gue: He is a saint! Beneran, cara ngomongnya so gentle dan dari attitude-nya terpancar hati yang bener-bener sincere dalam melayani Tuhan. Setelah ketemu dia beberapa kali, ternyata mobilnya hari ini Mercy S-class, lain kali Land Cruiser, lain kali… wah pokoknya gak nyangka deh dibalik penampilannya yang luxurious, ada hati yang begitu tulus. Kalo kata istri gue, liat dong penampilannya dari atas sampe bawah merek semua.. he..he.. Kemudian gue juga dapet tau bahwa dia seorang yang sangat murah hati dalam berbagi di pelayanan. Oh my God, there are so many good rich people – Godly rich people! Where have I been all this time?

Ada Oom yang ini, Tante yang itu, Oom yang lain lagi, Tante yang lain lagi – satu per satu hadir dalam hidup gue dan menjadi such a strong and beautiful inspiration.

Gue belajar bahwa Tuhan mau memberkati hidup kita karena Dia begitu mencintai kita. Beberapa orang secara khusus Tuhan mau pakai untuk menjadi saluran berkat keuangan buat GerejaNya dan sesama. Pengalaman pelayanan gue menunjukkan bahwa karya-karya pewartaan butuh dana yang ngga kecil. Karya-karya penginjilan ngga murah, tapi Injil kerajaan Allah tetap harus diberitakan sampai ke ujung dunia. Di abad multimedia ini, pesan cinta dan kehidupan anugerah TUhan harus lebih lantang terdengar daripada suara-suara sekuler yang seringkali menyesatkan. Orang-orang miskin harus ditolong, dan anak-anak terlantar harus dipelihara supaya mereka kenal cinta Tuhan. Siapa yang mendanai proyek-proyek kecil dan proyek-proyek besar Tuhan kalau bukan anak-anakNya sendiri – seperti gue ini. (ciee..)

Gue belajar bahwa kita dipanggil untuk berbagi buat sesama. Semakin kita diberkati, semakin kita diutus untuk menjadi berkat buat sesama. Banyak orang bilang salah kalau kita kasih perpuluhan supaya diberkati Tuhan 100 kali lipat. Masa Tuhan disogok pakai perpuluhan? He..he.. dulu gue juga berpikir begitu, en memang salah kalau kita berpikir mau nyogok Tuhan. Tapi kenyataannya Tuhan itu memang sangat baik dan Dia mau memberkati kita. Berkat-berkatNya sudah Dia sediakan buat kita dan tinggal kita ambil. Caranya? Gimana kalau Tuhan bilang gini: Berkat-berkat untukmu sudah Kusediakan. Supaya kamu belajar memberi, terimalah berkat yang sudah Kusediakan itu dengan cara  memberi 10% dari hasil usahamu bagi GerejaKu…. Hmm.. rasanya sih fair enough. Apakah ini berarti nyogok? I don’t think so. Memang Tuhan sudah sediain kok berkatnya, hanya saja kita harus belajar memberi untuk mendapatkannya, supaya kita ngga terikat sama uang…

Jadi sekarang apakah kita perlu memberi perpuluhan? Gue selalu percaya bahwa cinta tidak dibatasi oleh angka tertentu. Jadi berilah buat Tuhan sebesar cintamu ke Tuhan. Angkanya? Ya terserah sebesar apa cintamu. Sepuluh persen boleh saja menjadi patokan dasar. Duapuluh persen juga boleh. Apalagi tigapuluh persen… Ada seseorang yang gue tau malahan mau kasih sembilan puluh persen buat berbagi dan sepuluh persen buat hidup keluarganya. Dan Tuhan memberkati hidupnya luar biasa berlimpah… (Berkat kan bukan cuma uang, banyak hal lain yang juga sangat penting, misalnya kesehatan, sukacita, keluarga yang harmonis, dsb.)

Apakah gue kasih perpuluhan supaya diberkati Tuhan? Yes of course.

Supaya diberkati 100x lipat? Oh yes definitely.

Supaya bisa memupuk kekayaan pribadi? No, never! Gue rindu diberkati Tuhan supaya gue bisa banyak berbagi dengan sesama yang menderita dan kekurangan. Gue rindu diberkati Tuhan supaya gue bisa menabur benih lewat pewartaan Injil. Gue rindu diberkati Tuhan supaya gue bisa membantu generasi muda Katolik bangkit dan berkarya buat Gereja dan dunia – dan mulai dari keluarga dan paroki kita masing-masing.

Hari ini, puji Tuhan atas those precious people – Godly rich people in my life. Apa gue mau hidup kaya?

Buat Tuhan? hayyuukk…!

(I’m on my way there already, just wait and see. Or even better – join me!)

Quotes of Mother Teresa

A clean heart is a free heart. A free heart can love Christ with an undivided love in chastity, convinced that nothing and nobody will separate it from his love. Purity, chastity, and virginity created a special beauty in Mary that attracted God’s attention. He showed his great love for the world by giving Jesus to her.

There is a terrible hunger for love. We all experience that in our lives – the pain, the loneliness. We must have the courage to recognize it. The poor you may have right in your own family.
Find them.
Love them.

Before you speak, it is necessary for you to listen, for God speaks in the silence of the heart.

Give yourself fully to God. He will use you to accomplish great things on the condition that you believe much more in His love than in your own weakness.

Speak tenderly to them. Let there be kindness in your face, in your eyes, in your smile, in the warmth of your greeting. Always have a cheerful smile. Don’t only give your care, but give your heart as well.

The more you have, the more you are occupied, the less you give. But the less you have the more free you are. Poverty for us is a freedom. It is not mortification, a penance.
It is joyful freedom. There is no television here, no this, no that. But we are perfectly happy. 

I pray that you will understand the words of Jesus, “Love one another as I have loved you.” Ask yourself “How has he loved me? Do I really love others in the same way?” Unless this love is among us, we can kill ourselves with work and it will only be work, not love. Work without love is slavery.

Little things are indeed little, but to be faithful in little things is a great thing.

A sacrifice to be real must cost, must hurt, must empty ourselves. The fruit of silence is prayer, the fruit of prayer is faith, the fruit of faith is love, the fruit of love is service, the fruit of service is peace.

Keep the joy of loving God in your heart and share this joy with all you meet especially your family. Be holy – let us pray.

I once picked up a woman from a garbage dump and she was burning with fever; she was in her last days and her only lament was: ‘My son did this to me.’ I begged her: You must forgive your son. In a moment of madness, when he was not himself, he did a thing he regrets. Be a mother to him, forgive him. It took me a long time to make her say: ‘I forgive my son.’ Just before she died in my arms, she was able to say that with a real forgiveness. She was not concerned that she was dying. The breaking of the heart was that her son did not want her. This is something you and I can understand.

When once a chairman of a multinational company came to see me, to offer me a property in Bombay, he first asked: ‘Mother, how do you manage your budget?” I asked him who had sent him here. He replied: ‘I felt an urge inside me.’ I said: other people like you come to see me and say the same. It was clear God sent you, Mr. A, as He sends Mr. X, Mrs. Y, Miss Z, and they provide the material means we need for our work. The grace of God is what moved you. You are my budget. God sees to our needs, as Jesus promised. I accepted the property he gave and named it Asha Dan (Gift of Hope).

Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.

Like Jesus we belong to the world living not for ourselves but for others. The joy of the Lord is our strength.

There is only one God and He is God to all; therefore it is important that everyone is seen as equal before God. I’ve always said we should help a Hindu become a better Hindu, a Muslim become a better Muslim, a Catholic become a better Catholic. We believe our work should be our example to people. We have among us 475 souls – 30 families are Catholics and the rest are all Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs—all different religions. But they all come to our prayers.

There are so many religions and each one has its different ways of following God. I follow Christ:
Jesus is my God,
Jesus is my Spouse,
Jesus is my Life,
Jesus is my only Love,
Jesus is my All in All;
Jesus is my Everything.

Make us worthy, Lord, to serve those people throughout the world who live and die in poverty and hunger. Give them through our hands, this day, their daily bread, and by our understanding love, give them peace and joy.
I heard the call to give up all and follow Christ into the slums to serve Him among the poorest of the poor. It was an order. I was to leave the convent and help the poor while living among them.

When a poor person dies of hunger, it has not happened because God did not take care of him or her.
It has happened because neither you nor I wanted to give that person what he or she needed.

You and I, we are the Church, no? We have to share with our people. Suffering today is because people are hoarding, not giving, not sharing.
Jesus made it very clear. Whatever you do to the least of my brethren, you do it to me.
Give a glass of water, you give it to me. Receive a little
child, you receive me.

Everybody today seems to be in such a terrible rush, anxious for greater developments and greater riches and so on, so that children have very little time for their parents. Parents have very little time for each other, and in the home begins the disruption of peace of the world.

If we really want to love we must learn how to forgive.

 

Life is Beautiful

Life is a gift and I thank God for everything He is and everything He has done to me.

If I look back to 10-15 years ago, I realize that there has never been any moment in my life, where He left me. He has always been with me through all of my struggle and my pain. He has always been with me through all my failures and tears. Most amazingly, He has always been by my side even at the many times when I was not lovable. There were times – and I know not only a few of them – when I was not easy at all for others to love. However, during these tough moments, His love never departed. He held me even closer, and He said He loved me a million times. He proves me that there is indeed no limit to His love and mercy and goodness…

I thank Him for His unconditional love.

He teaches me that a pure gold is a precious offering unto Him, yet a heart of love is purer than gold and even more precious to His Own Heart. He teaches me that flowers tell the beauty of God’s creation, yet a lifetime of faithfulness and humility is more beautiful than the flowers of the springtime.  He teaches me that material wealth can reflect the riches of God’s abundance, yet a strong Godly character is richer than the world with all its material wealth.  

I thank Him for His Fatherly wisdom. 

Every person in this world reflects the face of Jesus. The most unloving person in this world is Jesus in disguise, inviting us to enlarge our capacity to love. The most unfavorable situation in this life is Jesus at work, encouraging us to expand our trust in Him. It is Jesus everywhere. It is love at work everywhere. And no matter what circumstances we have today, in the end love always wins. We don’t know what exactly will happen in a few years from now, or even a few minutes from now. But we do have the assurance that no matter what happens; love is always at work to make all things beautiful for us – for me.Jesus always wants to make me happy. Jesus always wants to fill me with joy – a never ending everyday joy of complete trust in Him.

I thank Him for His everyday grace.

He placed dreams in my heart, and He fulfills them one by one. He does not pour down events and situation from heaven, but He invites us to take part in His saving work of love. He showers us with divine grace from above, and allows us to undergo struggle and even failures. He accompanies us with His everyday strength and consolation to make our dreams come true. At the end of the day, it is not only the dreams that materialize, but the heart – the wounded and broken heart – has become full of wisdom and compassion. A heart just like His very own Heart.

I thank Him for life passion and dreams.

His love, His mercy, His forgiveness, His peace, His joy… they fill my heart to overflow.

His desires, His words, His promises, His smiles, His laughter… they fill my passion days and nights.

His protection, His blessings, His affirmation, His abundance, His trust in me… they fill my everyday walk, they enable me to fly like an eagle; they empower me to inspire the world with love.

He is everywhere in and around me. He is my life.

Life is indeed beautiful.