The Instantaneous Life
-Miss Yankitina Goldiva D Sangma
What a world! I exclaimed, having woke up from a realisation which I believe hit me hard. We live in an Instant world where everyone wants everything instantaneously. Who wants to stand in a queue to pay bills when the work can be done in a blink of an eye right away from home. Is it not an old school to wait for a letter posted by a friend, to wait for a bus, to stand in queue… Oh! The list goes on. The world gets impatient a little more each day. And just like a devout offspring of Adam, we put the blame on our busy schedules. Perhaps that is absolutely correct. There is no problem in trying to have things instantly. When the rest of the world is at a rabbit phase, why walk with a tortoise? Having an instant gratification is glorious.
How are Christians responding to this instantaneous world, though? I questioned myself. It was a moment of epiphany for me, so I would not dare project my view as universal truth, but I would rather implore you to consider my answer as a layman’s view and not as scholarly.
The instantaneous life has encroached Christianity, and it is consuming its faith like a wildfire. We have trampled our feet on God’s way of answering our prayers with “Yes, No or Wait,” all for the sake of an instantaneous life. We cannot afford to pray and wait for God to answer. Someone else might get it. We hate to wait for God to intervene. Sometimes God can be really slow, and it just does not work in an instantaneous world. Does it?
Let us take the time to look around us.
Do you see that man? Yes, that man who just came out of the office. He went to meet the officer regarding the vacant post that his son is applying for, along with fifty other candidates. He came back, smiling. He surely does not want God to intervene. God might just say “wait” and puuufff! The job is gone. Isn’t it better then, to meet someone who might provide an instant gratification? We loathe waiting and so decides to take full charge of our lives, whether consciously or unconsciously. It reminds me of the Triumphant Entry of Jesus into Jerusalem and the Crucifixion of Jesus. I find a strong relationship between the two. Do you remember how Jesus was welcomed by people in Jerusalem? It was a grand spectacle. “A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road” (Matt. 21:8). The crowd started to shout and cheer for Jesus. It was a moment of celebration for the people who had a smaller picture of God’s plan. They welcomed Jesus with warm hearts and with splendor expecting that He probably would like King David to sit on His mighty throne and overthrow the Roman Empire, or perhaps gratify the worldly longings instantly. But when things did not turn up the way people expected, the welcoming hearts were filled with detestation. Then finally, in Matthew 27: 11-26, we see Jesus before Pilate. Not to have a cup of tea and talk about the administration but the “Son of David,” “He who comes in the name of the Lord,” stood before Pilate to be trialed. Fueled by the conspiracy of the chief priests and the elders, the crowds shouted: “Crucify him.” The lips that once shouted “Hosanna to the Son of David” now sang a different song.
How I loathe the crowd! But I see myself amongst the crowd. I see a lot of us amongst the crowd. We welcome Jesus into our lives, surrender ourselves entirely, and tell him to take complete charge of our lives. That’s the Triumphant entry of Jesus. But when things do not go the way we want, we push Jesus into the background and take charge of our lives. We crucify him. This instant world where everything needs to be gratified instantly does not want Jesus to walk calmly on the beach of Galilee, or wait for four long days to bring Lazarus back to life. We want answers immediately and not just any answers rather those that could quench our worldly thirst. We cannot wait, or else someone might get better off us. That is when we say RIP to Jesus and shout, “I have resurrected!”, that is when we crucify the same God, we welcomed into our lives to take complete charge. We snatch the steering wheels of our lives from the hands of God and drive recklessly all for instant gratification.
We carry a hammer in our hands, and when God waits for four long days to bring Lazarus back into life, we nail Him on the cross. This instantaneous life has made a mess with our faith and has compelled us to lose confidence in God’s perfect timing, which eventually is leading us to take charge of our lives ourselves.
Isn’t it time we introspect our response to this instantaneous world and make needful amendments before Jesus comes and overturns the tables in our lives?
Yankitina Goldiva D Sangma studied English Literature at NEHU Tura campus. She believes in the power of a pen and a paper. That’s the reason why she writes.