Just a small incident I wish to share. Krsna has His own ways to instruct. Recently I was caught by the TC; as my season ticket (monthly pass) expired just the previous day. I had completely forgotten about renewing my pass. I requested him to excuse me as it was an honest mistake. But he was very strict and penalized me with an amount which could have got me a travel for more than 2 months. My mom and friends mockingly laughed at me. They found it quite amazing because I am always very particular about having proper tickets, giving rightful fare; just try to follow senior devotees. But this incident was an epicfor them. My mom said good lesson for you, some friends said never mind. For me it was very embarrassing. Although I too laughed at it, but somewhere I was affected by it.
I realized, just a carelessness of one day, and I was penalized despite of following the ethics all the time every time. This incident taught me the importance of being alert and careful, we may have been following the principles and practicing different angas of bhakti for years, but a moment of carelessness can earn a huge penalty. It may not take Bhakti away, but will definitely disturb the rhythm of our service. And we won’t be able to even laugh at it.
Recently we got an opportunity to serve a senior Vaishnava couple. They explained how in a family Bhakti is like the youngest baby, like the most precious jewel. We need to take care of it and nurture it. A moment of inattentiveness or carelessness and Bhakti will slip away. And in this age of Kali, we cannot afford to waste our time in re-establishing our mood of service again and again. We need to take things seriously, and inquire about the truths of life. Every day our sadhna should be better than the previous day; even a constant level of practice is as good as degradation. The quality of our sadhna should increase exponentially with the increasing number of days.
We cannot imagine how many births we have spent without serving Krsna, how many more can we afford to? You never know what the next moment holds for you. We are heading towards a surprise test moment by moment, because not all of us are lucky to know the dates of the Final Test, for most of us it is gonna be a surprise.