On 18th September, 1936 Ram Chandra Sitaram Dev alias Balabhau or Balabhat says about his experiences with Shirdi Sai Baba.
He heard about Baba from Amir Sakkar Khatik-butcher from Bandra and from Das Ganu at his bhajan in Kalayan.They both spoke high of Baba and asked him to go and see Baba.So one fine day he went with Sri Krishna Patil to Shirdi as he had intended to go to Akkalkote and Amir had told him Shirdi is on the way and he can have darshan of Baba so he halted in Shirdi thinking he will take darshan and move off to Akkalkote.They stayed in Ganapati Temple.
When he took darshan of Baba, Baba said "I must go to Akkalkote " ,predominating idea in his mind was read by Baba . He was struck at once by power of Baba to read what he had in his mind, and he decided to spend the day with him at Shirdi. Next day he went away, with Baba's permission , to Akkalkote.
After that he was pulled like sparrow by Baba and he came next on Diwali when there was huge crowd from Bombay to have darshan of Baba .Ram Chandra went to mosque took Baba's darshan and sat with Baba from 8 P.M till midnight and there he asked Baba to give him Updesh and become His Guru.
On this Baba said very beautifully:
Baba said: "It is not essential that one should have a Guru. Everything
Is within us. What you sow, you reap. What you give you get. There is no need for a Guru.
It is all within you. Try to listen within and follow the Direction you get, "We must look at our self. That is the monitor, the Guru".
Though Ram Chandra had his Sampradai Guru at Ratnagiri he kept approaching Baba for updesh and his faith grew so much in Baba that gradually his visit to Pandharpur, Akkalkote dropped.
Ram Chandra was in two services, he was Asst.master in a local school and was post master of Andheri for which he got additional wages and he worked as a stamp vendor. In this way, he could get adequate money to meet his expenses.
Whenever Ram Chandra and Umabai(His wife)went to Shirdi, Sai Baba did not let them go for many days- beyond his leave days and due to long gaps the school authorities inquired where he was spending away his time and heckled him about it. He had to choose between Shirdi and school work, so he gave up school teaching, but retained the stamp vendor's work till five years and then got it transferred to his son. That gave him a net income of 20 to 25 Rs. which was sufficient for him.
Ram Chandra when gave up service, he was only 32. But he kept up his faith and his financial position was satisfactory. He used to attend each Shri Ramnavami of Baba.
Not only when Baba was in flesh but even later he received personal direction from Baba in his life .This Ram Chandra did by casting chits in front of Baba picture and getting one picked out after prayer for guidance.
Once when Baba was in flesh Ram Chandra tells about a incident where he got afraid when he saw that in his place Andheri, there was a terrible robbery, where the inmates of a house was robbed and was injured severely by robbers, seeing them in hospital with this incident he prayed to Baba to help and save him and his family from such misfortune.
That night Baba appeared in dream and said:"He had come with ten Pathans and that he need not fear".
Just at that time, the washer men using B. B. & C. I. Rly. property for their washing, were refused further access to their usual washing places. Ten of them came to him and wished to build huts for themselves on his land. He readily agreed. This not only gave him rent but also company by which they were safe from robbers' attacks.
It was noticed that with Baba's advice he always got his work done, here are 2 incidents.
1.The well that they were using had no sufficient supply of water for their daily chores and he consulted Baba and acting on His advice, he dug a new well in the place approved by Baba and there he found abundant supply of water.
2.Later he began the building work only after getting Baba's personal sanction at Shirdi.He had gone to Shirdi and told Baba about the funds he had. He only had money to put 5 suites of room .But Baba drew on the floor before Him 25 lines and said "one rupee for each line, i.e., each sets of rooms. Give 25 rupees." Though he intended to build only 5, he paid 25 rupees, and the work began. With time and money suits were slowly being added till 1920, and the total number of sets of rooms became 25and is still only 25 rooms.
This is how Baba took care of his devotee all the time .