When hands get stuck

vaseA little boy got his hand stuck in a vase. It was no ordinary vase. It was a family heirloom and was very valuable. But little boys do not understand such things and this boy’s hand was in it. Try as she could, his mother could not free the imprisoned hand. When the father came home the little fellow was still walking around with a vase on his hand. The father made an attempt to pry the jar loose, the neighbours came to help, but no one could get the hand out of the vase.

Finally they realized that the only thing left to do was to smash the precious heirloom. When they did, they noticed that the little fellow’s hand was clenched into a fist, and in the middle of his fist was a penny. He had spied the penny on the bottom of the vase, had taken hold of it, and would not let it go.

Many an unbeliever is similarly stuck in unbelief. He resists believing in God. However, the issue is not that the opening of faith is too small. The real problem lies elsewhere. The person is holding on to something. It may be the pleasures of sin, or the profits of illicit gain—but he doesn’t want to let it go.

This individual protests loudly against faith in God. He recommends breaking the vase of belief.

But it’s a smokescreen. It doesn’t address the real issue. Answers may help, but the root problem is not intellectual—it’s moral.

Ask him what he’s holding in his hand.

–Jurgen O. Schulz

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