DID GOD GIVE ME EYES?
FROM THE ROMA TO THE WORLD
why did God give me eyes?
Kaskada Magazine has been moving forward to become a Christian Magazine for Roma and completely produced by Roma. We just have a few bits and pieces in this edition by our non-Roma friends– but it really is Roma for The World.
A WORD FROM THE EDITOR
For our English readers in Greenland, we know how many of you feel. For the Dalits in India we are your brothers and sisters. For the idigenous peoples of Australia and New Zealand, you are in our hearts. Whoever you are, wherever you are let, this magazine tell you that you are not alone. We are for you.
In this edition we have a wonderful article by Miša Bakić about our origins and our links to Mother India and Alika his wife shares with us a recipe from the Gypsy people of Pakistan.
We welcome A PILGRIM to the pages of Kaskada in this edition with a well thought out Bio-Sketch.
I have written the Cover Story on the true measurement of beauty as well as bringing my good friend "Muju The Knight" to give us his wisdom. Two of our Kaskada Photography Interns, Matea and Sanja have given us some thought provoking pictures in our photo-journal section.
So people…..put your seat belts on and lets go for a ride together through the pages of Kaskada Magazine Summer 2020.
ROMA RECIPIES FROM AROUND THE WORLD
ne of the realities of being Roma is that we know what it means to suffer persecution and be desriminated against. Everyone or our writers has experienced violence against their bodies and violence against their human dignity.
THE BIBLE GIVES US SOME ANSWERS
WHY DID GOD GIVE ME EYES?
Beauty?Pure and soft flawless skin, a slender body, an ideal balance of flesh, muscle and bone? Wisdom? A high IQ and the ability to speak with beautiful words? Creativity? Is it how I combine my clothes, adjust my hair or the skill in the way that I apply my make-up today?
Beauty, wisdom and creativity are so much more!
We have to ask difficult questions when we think about these things. Male, female, young or old alike. What we really have to ask is if we can be honest with ourselves.
That is the first step, honesty.
So let us go on an imaginary journey.
You will not need a suitcase, just a simple mirror.
There's only you and your mirror on this trip.
Take the first step and hear what God has said
concerning His creation.
Why Did God Give Me Eyes?
God spoke: “Let us make human beings in our image, make them reflecting our nature so they can be responsible for the fish in the sea, the birds in the air, the cattle, and, yes, Earth itself, and every animal that moves on the face of Earth.” God created human beings; he created them godlike, Reflecting God’s nature. He created them male and female and God blessed them.
Now read the following questions and take the time to think about each of them and possibly find an answer.
1. Look at yourself in the mirror: look at your eyes, your face, your head. What thoughts come to your head as you look at yourself? Can you look at your face as a whole without thinking how you'd like to change something?
2. Now look at yourself critically. Am I beautiful? Am I ugly? What or who am I comparing myself to? How does that feel?
3. Now try to observe yourself without comparison. Observe yourself with interest and curiosity, as if you are seeing yourself for the first time. It may too hard to look at yourself without comparisons but try. How does that feel?
4. Every time God looks at you, He does so with out comparing you to anyone else. He looks at you with interest and curiosity. He's satisfied when he looks at you. He wants you to be satisfied with yourself. He wants you to value yourself because you are fulfilling His plan for your life.
This English Edition of KASKADA is seen in many countries around the world.
If you would like to share your heart with Jani and ask questions or just have a friend you can write to her at Jani@kaskada.club
God, when I get to the end of this life you are there holding me in your arms.
My dear readers, do you know your worth? Are you aware now? God doesn't make mistakes. He created you and put you in a body, in a family, and in in this country. God looks at us like beautiful shells. You think you have no value but the opposite is true. You are His pearl.
5. You! Your body, spirit and soul is something that God has skilfully shaped and crafted, with every detail planned.
I want to share with you something that I take very personally and which is very helpful to me. It is a Psalm that touches me at my deepest point of need.
It's psalm 139... this psalm is a pearl, a treasure which I keep very close. This Psalm says that God has known us all and knows all about us! He knows your thoughts, sees where you're going and sees when you are being honest and also dishonest. He knows everything you do. Even before a word forms in your mind, God knows what you are going to say. He put his hands upon you and surrounds you from all sides. You can't get away from Him. Even if you went up to heaven He is there. If you came down into the world of the dead He is there.
God created the inside of your being and shaped you while you were still in the womb of your mother.
God created you beautifully and wonderfully.
Your God chose how your bones develop.
His eyes followed how you were formed.
Your days were written into His book even before
you came into the world.
Matea Lončar lives with her family
in a small and rural village in Eastern
Croatia where the natural beauty
of her surroundings have trained
her eye to see beauty in the abstract.
Matea is an intern of photo
journalism and a new member of LENS, the vocational training
guilde of the RBU KASKADA CLUBS.
Here Matja shares with KASKADA
the theme "Broken" as discovered
in the left-behind places of a village lost.
"With a hood on my head, tears in my eyes and anger in my heart, I waited for the police and cried like a small child"
NO LONGER ALONE
They told me at Church, "Every Christian is put to the test, each of us carries his own troubles. The storms will come and God will be with you." As a child I thought it was very easy to go through those difficult moments and that the big problems don't really exist. I thought a strong enough man would never be broken. Being broken was something for losers, that's not what I wanted to be. I was something else. I was a warrior standing on the front line.
I thought I'd never be broken because I'm so strong in faith. But things ended with dreams, ideas and ideals all being broken.
I got to the point where I realized that nothing was going to be the way I wanted it to because everything I wanted became nothing. At the center of that nothingness was me.
I'm all alone. Broken. Disappointed. Hurt.
I was lying in a ditch not far from my street, the tears kept coming. So much pain had stressed my heart. I felt weak. I believed would never be anything of value.
"I became the very
person I believed I
would never become
– a looser. "
My family didn't have much. We lived very modestly and some things that most young people have today, I couldn't have. One day my father decided to surprise us with a present. Soon he had to sell the same gift to pay back money he owed.
Debts have always been something my parents struggled with. It often caused drama and violence in my family.
I prayed so many times to make it stop.There have been times when I wanted another family, not a family that would have a lot of money, I wanted a family that would be happy and would stick together when trouble came.
Every day my family was moving away from that vision I had for the family I longed for.The situation became worse and felt as if I was breaking into little bits that could never be pur back together again.
The day my father sold the gift a fight broke out in our family that lasted for hours. The sounds from the living room were getting louder and the profanity and insults replaced every gentle word I longed for to be in my family.
My mother was pushed against the wall. As I tried to calm my father down my mind was rushing with thoughts of only one thing– I must protect my mother.
When you father is hurting your mother and you are not yet strong enough to protect her it produces fear, anger and hatred that is not easy to describe.
Her whole body was shaking in fear, which she bravely tried to hide.
The sounds of the punches replaced the words. The fear that I felt me didn't stop me from my mind being full of thoughts of protecting my mother; the one who gave birth to me and protected me like a lioness over the years.
My father grabbed my arm and pushed me hard to the other end of the room.
I looked at him as every next blow was stronger than the previous one as he hit me.
Then, in tears, I burst out of my house looking for a phone to call the police. I was humiliated
I was not strong enough to protect my mother. I stood in the street, in tears, waiting for the police and praying. I didn't ask God to be there for me now that the storm came. I was arguing with him, I was mad at him. Every part of me was yelling, "Why God, I trusted you, I begged you every night for this to stop.
As usual I didn't get an answer. I was angry, not only at God but on myself because I was so weak and I couldn't protect my mother.
With a hood on my head, tears in my eyes and anger in my heart, I waited for the police and cried like a small child. When I saw the police coming into my yard from afar, I started running to them. They represented safety.
When I walked into the house, I heard my mother defending and lying to protect my father. She said it was just a family feud and that I has been scared for no reason. I didn't believe what my ears heard. The Policeman turned around to me abruptly and said that for no reason, I could have put my father in jail.
After they left, I sat all alone. Alone, confuse angry and rejected. I felt that God couldn't hear me. He didn't want me, and that he didn't care about me. My mom came and sat next to me, asked me if I could stop crying. I told her I was crying because I went out and called the police like a weak person, and I didn't defend her and protect her. I was in tears all night praying to God.
I do not know how the change came but slowly my heart began to hope. I would use the word hope not change.
Is it that when we come to the end of our own strength that God intervenes? Probably yes.
My cousin, auntie and Uncle pray for me so do others. My mother has always prayed for me but now she prays in a deeper way. Is their prayer what changes things and people and creates hope? I am sure that it is part of it.
God did things to show me that he cared about me. It was like he gave me a loving hug. When I asked God to give me a family to love, God gave me vision to be the one to bring love into the home I have and not long to find another family and see it filled with love.
When I knocked on various doors to find something that would fill the cracks in my heart some kind of healing began to take place.
Is everything wonderful? No. Do I have doubts? Yes. But God has given me a new heart and once again I am dreaming the dreams of a little boy.
I dream, I believe and I hope and I am no longer alone.
"God did things to show me that he cared about me. It was like he gave me a loving hug."
by Francisco Gonzalezon Unsplash
Sanja Nikolić is an intern of photo journalism and
a member of LENS, the vocational training guild of the RBU KASKADA CLUBS.
Sanja lives in Eastern Croatia where she draws inspiration for her photo
shoots, bringing together her eye for color and texture to produce a pointed and pithy style.
Here, Sanja brings her lens to KASKADA and shares on the theme "Broken"
when things break...
UNA CLUB TEAM
THE ROMA OF PAKISTAN
There are approximately 60,00 Lori Roma who live in Pakistan. They are some of the very first Roma and all of us Roma are related to them. This special dish is called Chicken Kurma and I have borrowed an excellent recipe from Linda at https://thewanderlustkitchen.com/indian-chicken-korma/
Drizzle the chicken with the oil and sprinkle on the garam masala, curry powder, salt and pepper. Massage into the meat and cover, leaving to marinate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Grill the chicken for 5-6 minutes per side, until cooked through.
Meanwhile, make the korma sauce: place the onions, garlic, and 1 cup of water in the bowl of a blender. Puree until smooth.
Measure out the spices (curry powder through nutmeg) into a small bowl.
In a large saucepan heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Once the oil is shimmering, add the pureed onion mixture and cook for a 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly, until it begins to darken in color.
Add the tomatoes, ginger, ground almonds, coconut milk, yogurt, red chili, pre-measured spices, and brown sugar. Stir well.
Turn the heat down to low and simmer 30 minutes. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and add to the pan; simmer for an additional 15 minutes. Serve with steamed basmati rice and/or naan.
FOR THE CHICKEN MARINADE
3 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons garam masala
2 teaspoons curry powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
FOR THE SAUCE
2 white onions, peeled and cut into quarters
6 cloves garlic, peeled
4 teaspoons curry powder
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander seed
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 large tomatoes, diced small
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger root
1/2 cup ground raw almonds
1 cup unsweetened canned coconut milk
1 1/2 cups plain low-fat yogurt
1/2 a small red chili, de-seeded and minced
1 tablespoon brown sugar (packed)
I closed my eyes and in a flash I found myself at the center of the universe. The song I heard earlier as an angelic whisper had suddenly become billions upon billions of angelic beings. They had, with their voices, instruments and a celestial philharmonic along with 24 elders, four creatures and people as many as the sands of the sea from every tribe and tongue, constantly exclaiming the words, the Holy Lord is God and the Lamb is worthy to receive the glory and praise of generations.
I raised my head to the Throne of the Lamb and saw so many lightning bolts and thunder coming out from Him while the famous Covenant Rainbow were over His head as a sign of His promise. His eyes were like a fire that devours and His voice like the roar of the many waters.
I began to breathe hard when I was fully engulfed by the Glory of the Lord. He rose from His Throne and at the same moment all the celestial bodies fell to their knees and bowed their heads as He walked towards me. He came up to me, put his hand on my shoulder and said, "Fear not!" I saw one of the elders coming before Him, in his hands he held very carefully a golden vessel that had a sweet smell of incense. Then he filled the entire sky with smoke and bowing before Him exclaimed: Lord of heaven and earth, here is a golden vessel containing the prayers and weeping of the Saints. The Lord stretched out His hands on which he still had the marks of His wounds, and holding with one hand a golden vessel raised His other hand in the air, and at that moment there was an absolute silence in the sky. White smoke began to emerge from the vessel, which soon spread across the sky and when it came to me instead of the smell, I began to hear voices.
nd so, I angrily raised my fist to heaven and from my bitter heart shouted to God. Is there any hope? Is there any hope for us to stop being rejected? All of a sudden, I heard a song, like some sweet singing. Trying to find out where that song was coming from, it became stronger and stronger. The beautiful chorus sang a heavenly melody, something I'd never heard in my life, an angelic melody that penetrated the very essence of my heart, making it as tender as snow. My whole being was engulfed in some inner peace and serenity, I could hear myself breathing and my own heartbeat. That's when the voice said, "Close your eyes."
I responded. How am I going to see with my eyes closed? The voice answered. “Why do you close your eyes when you kiss your beloved? Or when you hug your children? Or when you pray? The most beautiful things in the world we don't see with our eyes, but with our hearts. Close your eyes because I want to show you something very special.”
Mother India - Why?
THERE IS HOPE, AND HOPE IS IN ME!
YOUR TIME HAS COME!
The voices of the righteous of all nations and languages from all generations. I was weeping and praying for all the oppressed and rejected. The cry of the slain saints through the centuries of exile. Weeping and calling out for the millions of aborted babies rejected by mothers and fathers. Among all those voices, I began to hear Roma voices. I heard an echo of fists coming down, the screaming of raped Roma women, eternal flogging and slavery of Roma to the European peoples, I saw a river of tears and innocent spilt blood during the Nazis years in Auschwitz, Mauthausen and Jasenovac. And then I heard a scream as my voice was shouting with all its force if there was hope, OH MOTHER INDA, IS THERE ANY HOPE FOR US?!
I fell on my knees and cried! My heart was broken for all that my people have been through for centuries and generations. He came up to me, knelt down, put His hand on my face and raised my face to be face-to-face with His. I was looking at His beautiful brown eyes, when He spoke: I am a good shepherd who lays His life for His sheep!
I have a plan for your people, He told me. I was very encouraged and the spirit in me became incredibly strengthened.
Jesus then spoke, “There is one more thing I want to show you. I want to show you Mother India. I thought He would show me the geographical location of India, maybe its towns, villages, or nature and beauty. But no.
He said, "Put your hand on My heart." And just like the Apostle Thomas who wanted put His hands in the wounds of His side.
I put my hand towards His heart and in a moment I saw a vast plain of fertile land, a crystal clear river running through the city, unusual but beautiful trees that constantly bear new fruits that serve to heal nations, lambs running with children, I saw people from every tribe and tongue, people from all nations and ethnicities, people of different skin colors, and how they all lived together as brothers and sisters. Laughter and joy echoed through the earth while the song of the Lamb was sung from every heart.
Among everyone else, I saw myself, I saw my Roma. I saw Jesus wiping their tears from their eyes with His hands, how his embrace brings warmth to their spirit, and how His word of love heals their wounded hearts. I saw Him holding a shepherd's stick in his Hand and just like a good shepherd takes them to the green pasture, past the calm waters!
That is when I realized, all we've been looking for generations is here, Mother India isn't just a geographical place, oh no! She's something much, much more. It is the loving acceptance of God, inner peace, hope for the future and above all, unlimited and unconditional love!
Mother India is no place, Mother India is a PERSON! And that person is Jesus Christ! I opened my eyes, looked out to the sky and with a smile on my face I said, "MOTHER INDIA – I HAVE FOUND YOU!
OH GOD LET ME BE FREE FROM SIN SO THAT I CAN LIVE IN THE FREEDOM YOU DESIRE FOR ME
everybody's hero and role model
Muju The Knight
GOD BLESS YOU AND KEEP YOU AND CAUSE HIS FACE TO SHINE UPON YOU AND GIVE YOU PEACE.
You are not alone. Even the Apostle Paul wrote about this problem in his own life and in reality he wrote about it for everyone's life as well. The key thing to understand is that God does not judge you on how you perform in your Christian life. He judges you in relationship to the Blood of Jesus Christ that has been applied to your life.
This truth, however, is not the end, it is the beginning of Christian living.
When you realise that God has forgiven you and cleansed you from all sin, this creates a response on your part.
We love Him because He first loved us.
Everyone struggles with the world the flesh and Devil.
The key is that when you do sin you run to Jesus and ask for His forgiveness. The more forgiveness you experience the more of His love you wil experience. The more love you experieince the more you want to love Him ........and not sin.
ASK THE PASTOR
Letter from our readers
"I find myself keep doing things I know are wrong and I am afraid I am going to loose my salvation. What can I do?"
HERE I AM HELP ME PLEASE!
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LORD HELP ME TO....