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You must Win God's Love

You all praise God, but it is far more important that God praises you. You declare your love for God, but you have to find out if God has declared his love for you. You believe that God is yours, but has God told you that you are his? Suppose you send a registered letter to someone. You will gain full satisfaction only after you receive an acknowledgment from the addressee that the letter has been received and read. Declaring your love for God and declaring that God is great can be compared to sending a registered letter. But that alone will not satisfy you. You experience the deepest contentment only when you get the positive acknowledgment from God that you have his love and that he considers you great also. It is only when he says, "You are my very own. You are most dear to Me!" that you attain total fulfillment.

Arjuna got such an assurance from the Lord after he said to Lord Krishna, "Swami, you are my all, I am yours! I surrender everything to you!" Previously, Arjuna had a number of desires, but when he surrendered fully to the Lord he renounced all his wants and desires. Then he earned the declaration from the Lord, "Dear one, you are mine!" To gain this result you have to engage yourself in spiritual practice. The hope and fruit of all spiritual practice is to get this declaration from the Lord that you are his. This becomes your greatest treasure, the consummation of your life.

Even if you are highly educated, even if you occupy a very high position in life, even if you are very wealthy, whatever be your station in life, when you go abroad you must have a passport to travel in a foreign land. A person may say, "I'm highly educated. I'm very wealthy. I have vast land holdings. I would like to have a passport." But just by saying that he will not get the passport. All these things may be personal attainments and accomplishments, but if you want to go to another country there is a particular procedure that you must follow. This procedure cannot be different for educated people and for uneducated people, for wealthy ones and for poor ones.

Even in such a small thing as going somewhere by bus or train or plane, no one will care to know your position and accomplishments. As long as you have a ticket with you, no one will ask you if you are a wealthy person or an educated one and what position you are holding. They will be satisfied to know that you have a ticket, and they will take you to your destination. If you do not have the ticket you will be left behind, no matter what your credentials are.

In the same way, if you want to gain entry into the kingdom of liberation, you need to have the grace of God. That is required for entry. The grace of God is your passport. But even a passport is not enough. If you merely have a passport, then there may still be some objections and problems. You should also have a visa; that gives you the right to enter your place of destination. In addition to the grace of God you must also have the merit of your spiritual efforts and yearnings.

The giver may be ready to give the gift, but the receiver must also be ready to receive it. God is prepared to give, but you must have the capacity to receive. Through your surrender and spiritual efforts you become ready to receive God's grace. Therefore, to enter into the kingdom of liberation you must have God's love and you must also have the merit of your own spiritual efforts. When these two come together you will be able to gain liberation.