Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment that you pronounce you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, "Let me take the speck out of your eye," when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye.
Christianity. Matthew 7.1-5
How many of us are engaged in this futile exercise of judging the Divinity for unanswered prayers? Marks and remarks are based on human perceptions that could err, and thus not to be hurled at Divinity. The Lord is perfect in His priorities, writes Joy Ziegler of the United States, narrating a beautiful experience that highlights the uncanny logic behind Godly perceptions...An extract from Sanathana Sarathi, January 1986.

I had been waiting for weeks to have an interview when 'SHE' arrived. Immediately ‘SHE' was called in for an interview. The very next day 'SHE' received another. 'How unfair', I murmured under my breath as I continued to wait in the hot Indian sun. Eventually I did receive an interview. But time and again after returning to the U.S., I thought of the young woman who had several interviews and never had to wait! 'Why did she get such fine attention', I would ponder.

I was allowed to return to Puttaparthi the following year and as it was the time of Swami's birthday and the Fourth World Conference, the Abode of Peace was filled to the brim with devotees. This meant I was assigned to a hall. And I was living with one hundred and fifty women from all corners of the globe. Rooming directly across from me under a blue mosquito net was 'SHE'. Yes, it was the young woman who had received several interviews upon her 1984 arrival. I strongly remembered waiting week after agonizing week while 'SHE' was treated as royalty.

We had been roommates for three days acknowledging each other with eye contact but never speaking.

Then one day, out of the blue, 'SHE' approached me and said in broken English: "I think you were here last year when I was. I remember you. Do you remember me?" I replied. In fact I did remember her. Then I mentioned that she had received several interviews in a very short period of time immediately upon her 1984 arrival. Smiling, she said: "Yes, I have a brain tumour. Swami touched my head and told me to think only of Him and not to worry. So, I have done just that. I am back at work now and I don't worry. I listen to Swami,” Startled by what she said, I stammered: "Did you return to the doctor? Did you have surgery?"

"No,” she calmly replied, "I never went back to the doctor. I only think of Him.” How courageous! How beautifully faithful!

Aghast at my previous thoughts and judgements, I was sickened with myself. And I had to sit down. How selfish I was! How dare I question the motives of Divinity? Who did I think I was?

The ego is the most subtle aspect of man, as it can be very sneaky.

We can never understand the ways of God though the ego will make us try. It will garb itself in beautiful garments to hide the truth of the lower self from the Real self. It took this experience and much pain, with a lot of self inquiry, to make me see a reality about my selfishness and judgements, which, garbed in beautiful clothes, I had neglected to look at.

The Lord is perfect in His priorities. Sai Baba is perfect in His picking and choosing.

As I again sit waiting in the hot sun for perhaps another magic moment with my Lord I often recall this painful lesson to remind me not to try and think for God.

I tell this story not to show literary excellence, but to help those who find themselves waiting and wondering. God makes no mistakes. Trust Him! Oh, I might add the woman never spoke to me again after that day

One fine morning; way back in 1962, I was surprised to receive orders to proceed to Kohima, Nagaland, as the Magistrate of the District! It was not a change from the frying pan to the fire; it was a leap from the frigidaire to the fire! I responded to the call of duty and moved from the quiet seashore town where I was in charge of Law and Order, to the picturesque land of hills and dales on the eastern frontier of India. I took with me my wife and seven children.

Nagaland was not a paradise of peace at that time. There were many measures, which I had to impose to prevent breaches of peace and tranquility; the curfew had to be clamped and enforced on many areas where hostiles were rampant. Nights were long and bitterly cold. Days were dull and life was mostly monotonous, with little or no company of care free friends. In spite of the dusk to dawn curfew, some Army Officers dropped in at my residence. They invited me to Prayer Meetings held by some of them at their residences, where I was able to hear for the first time of Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba and His Infinite Compassion and Power. They gave me a Book on the Life of Bhagawan, which planted His name and Form firmly in my mind. My wife and children also learnt to pray to Him, and His name was constantly on our lips. We had various instances of His miraculous intercession on our behalf. But, I must record one instance, where His Name revealed Itself as bullet proof armour.

On the evening of 14th April 1964, Kohima Town, and more specially, my residence was fired upon by Naga Hostiles from 7 30 in the evening till about 4 30 in the morning! Though my bungalow had 23 armed House Guards, it was not possible for them to stop the firing since the hostiles had secret, hideouts and were in the cover of darkness. The walls of the house were of earthquake proof material; so, they were definitely not bullet proof! They whizzed past, through and through!

The helplessness which overwhelmed me, my wife and the seven children can be better imagined than described. We lay huddled up, under sofas, tables and bedsteads, closing our eyes, and praying to Baba, to save us. No one got a wink of sleep; the Name was ever on the tongue; the Form ever in the mind. I could hear the children whisper, Sai Ram, Sai Ram, close to me, under the table.

Day dawned; we were all safe, unhurt! Not a single bullet hit me or my wife or any of the children.

I counted the bullet marks in the morning, and found them to be 485! Jai Sai Ram!