Facebook reminds me that three years ago, today we welcomed the (then) Director of IIMB to Auckland and to our home for a short visit. We felt very proud and honoured when Prof Raghuram visited New Zealand in March 2019 to pay his respects to my father Gnana Bhaktamitran (GB) with the traditional angavastram (stole). This came 33 years after GB’s retirement.

I am always thrilled when people remember him and say nice things about him, all of which I know are fully deserved. The most recent was from an interaction in a Facebook group about the city of Bangalore.

Nahomi, your father Bhakta Mitran was true to his name, a humble pious peace loving man who did his work diligently, one whom I could count more as a friend than a co-worker. When I was complaining about the Library not having been planned in Phase-1 construction, his comment was that Library is the collection of books and their organization for easy access and not an assigned building! He went on doing just that collection and organization.

Prof K.T. Kumar

While well-deserved recognition is desirable and good, ultimately, what really matters is whether the Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, will recognise us. The Bible tells us a lot about the love of God, and yet it does not hide the rest of the truth. Take a look at this scripture from the gospel of Matthew.

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

Matthew 7:210-23

This is a terrifying statement, and one that should cause us to introspect. The Bible tells us that we have a huge sin debt in our account that will damn us. The remedy is simple. Ironically, its very simplicity has tripped people up. The only One who has ever beaten death and come back to life has said that we simply need to trust Him fully. That’s all.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

John 3:16-18

Some more links, in case you are interested:

Post about the official announcement of GB’s passing.

Short video requested for by the Director for sharing with IIMB staff (past and present) and alumni, in which GB shares his faith.