I’ve mentioned this so many times in the past. Over the last few years, I’ve had an on-again, off-again relationship with God. I’m Hindu by religion, and as is well known, Hindus have hundreds, or maybe even thousands of Gods that they pray to. Growing up, my parents were never very forceful about religion. I grew up with reverence to a higher power, but never very ritualistic about religion. Hinduism does tend to be very ritualistic. Then I married someone from a completely different region of India, and suddenly, there was a whole new set of Gods that came into the picture. His family is extremely ritualistic, and so along with a new set of Gods, there was a whole new set of “rules” and rituals that came into the mix.

Ours has never been a very traditional marriage in any case, and in this aspect too, it was never any different. DH and I developed a “respect for God”, but no forceful rituals, and with no choice of one God over the others.

So we were never very religious to start with. Yes, we go to the temple once in a while, and we pray, and that is the extent of us being religious. Our routine has usually been to “say Hi to God” once a day, mostly in the morning, right after we shower.

Then IF happened to us. At first I prayed more fervently. I promised many things to God. Hindus believe in “vowing” to do something if God grants their wishes. So yes, I vowed to do a lot of things, but my wishes never came true. We begged, pleaded, promised, cried, and tried everything we could, but nothing happened.

Then I got pregnant. We thanked God over and over again – God was listening to us! Our wishes were being granted! Finally!

Then I miscarried. Not knowing where to turn, I blamed everything on God. We closed the doors to our temple (most Hindus have a little “temple” area in our homes, where we keep our deities etc.  Ours is in a linen closet! ☺ ) We didn’t pray for weeks, even though it felt odd, but we were at such odds with God, that we couldn't bring ourselves to prayer.

Over the last year and a half, I’ve gone back to praying, but I have stopped asking for anything in particular. I pray for others more than I do for myself now. And of late I’ve been trying to believe in the thought that God has a plan for me, even though I can’t see what it is.

And then God made His/Her presence felt in a way that only God can.

On this last Sunday, DH went off-roading with some of his friends. I met some friends for brunch, and then came back home. I tried calling DH several times that afternoon but couldn’t get through to him. Then finally, I got a call from DH a few hours later that they had had an accident and that our friend’s SUV had lost balance while going downhill on a rocky terrain. The SUV had rolled over 5-6 times down the hill until it finally stopped in a ravine. DH and 3 other people were in the vehicle. The glass windows had all shattered, the roof of the SUV had crumbled and caved inwards, and the vehicle was totaled. 

Miraculously the 4 friends walked out relatively unhurt. DH got a gash on his head,  the owner of the SUV got a muscle injury in his back, and the others got away with minor aches and pains and bruises. Of course, paramedics were called, and our friend whose back went out was airlifted to the closest ER. DH and the other 2 friends were taken in an ambulance. They didn't have cell phone reception till a couple of hours after the accident - till they were in the ambulance, on the way to the ER, and that's when DH called me. 

All this happened 90 miles away, and I had to drive out there to bring them home from the ER. My heart sank when I heard what DH was saying, but the fact that he was ~there~ - talking to me – his voice gave me the strength to remain calm as I drove out there. 

It could have been much worse. I shudder to think what would happen if that phone call I got brought news any different than what it did. I shudder to think of DH (and of course our friends) in that SUV, rolling downhill. Anything could have happened. They could have been thrown out of the vehicle and crushed. They could have got broken bones, and got injured severely.

When I reached the hospital and saw DH, I was trembling with the realization that we were so darned lucky that day. It could have been fatal. God truly had his hand over that vehicle that day.

I have been quick to whine and complain about my problems in life, and in the process, I was taking some things for granted. The events on Sunday made me re-assess everything, and made me realize the value of what I have in life. We have been so caught up in our failures that we have forgotten to enjoy each other, and we have forgotten to be thankful for each other’s company and the love and strength in our relationship.

I truly feel like that was a wake up call from God for us to sit up and take notice of everything that has been given to us. I am reminded of a hymn we used to sing in school:

Count your blessings,
Name them one by one
And it will surprise you
What the Lord has done.

Amen to that. I think it’s time for me to look at my life and count my blessings.