There are many ways of serving God, and we must not think of anyone’s service as insignificant. God values what is offered with love and devotion. As Rama,

He happily accepts the offerings of Sabari and the help rendered by Sugriva, Guha and others. As Krishna, He dances with the simple Gopikas and willingly tends cows, showing His simplicity and also showing the world that He is within the reach of everyone, if we approach Him with affection, Sengalipuram Rama Dikshitar said in a discourse.

The ocean too serves Rama who is waiting to cross the ocean to get to Lanka. Vibhishana suggests that the Lord offer saranagati (surrender) to the king of the ocean, and Rama does so. But the king of the ocean does not make any move to help Rama. For three days, Rama stays in a place called Tirupullani, resting on a bed of grass. For this reason, He is known as Darbha Sayana Rama in this holy place. Even after the wait, the king of the ocean does not make way for Rama. Angered by this attitude, Rama decides to use His arrows to suck out the waters. The king then apologises and surrenders to the Lord. How can the ocean have accepted the surrender of the Supreme One? That is why he remains silent when Rama offers His saranagati. The king of the ocean is desirous of doing saranagati himself at the feet of the Lord. His wish is fulfilled, when the Lord accepts his surrender.

Monkeys then help Rama build a bridge. There is a monkey by name Nala, who is Viswakarma the divine builder. This monkey was once cursed by a sage. The sage had been worshipping a saligrama, and seeing the attractive stone, the monkey picked it up, and put it in its mouth.

When the sage gave a chase, the monkey spat out the saligrama into the ocean. The sage, in order to retrieve the saligrama, ordered that stones thrown by Nala should not sink, but float. The saligrama came up to the surface and the sage picked it up. But from then on, any stone Nala threw into the ocean would float. So when Rama has to build a bridge, Nala’s services became useful. Thus, many assist Rama and the Lord accepts all their help gladly.

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