A Thief’s Lesson To His Son

A thief’s son approached him one day and said, “I wish to learn the trade. I think I am old enough and man enough to do so.”

The thief looked at the young boy from head to foot, then simply shrugged and said, “Okay. Come with me tonight.”

Photo courtesy of woodleywonderworks, Flickr
Photo courtesy of woodleywonderworks, Flickr

That night, they sneaked into a large house. The thief saw a large cabinet in the corner, opened it and saw that it contained very little. He hissed at the boy and signaled him over. When the boy came, the father shoved him inside and slipped a broom between the door handles, effectively trapping him. Then he slipped silently out of the house.

The boy began to shout and bang on the door but he came to his senses and realized that the household must now be awake after hearing all the racket. He stayed quiet until he heard voices from outside the cabinet door. Then he began to mew like a cat.

A servant heard the sound and opened the cabinet. The boy immediately jumped out and the servant was silent in shock for a few seconds. He then called out “Stop, thief!” but the boy had already jumped out the window.

People stormed out of the house, hot and angry, pursuing the boy who dared break into the sanctity of their home. The boy rounded a dark corner and saw a well by the side. He lifted a nearby rock, threw it into the well, and hid beside some bushes.

The pursuers rounded the corner just in time to hear a loud splash coming from the well and they all gathered around it, to see if the boy drowned himself or to capture him if he came up. While they were all intent on the well, the boy quietly slipped out from behind the bush and headed home.

When he arrived, he was so excited from his near escape that he forgot his anger at his father for trapping him in the first place. He stumbled over his words as he began to recount the tale of his escape. However, his father placed a finger over the boy’s mouth and said, “There is no need to tell me the details, my son. You are here. You have learned the trade.”

Be a Mirror

The preacher said, “The best thing that we can do is to leave everything in God’s hands. Realize that only he knows what is best for us. Don’t insist on your way but let God decide your path.”

photo courtesy of aloshbennet, Flickr
photo courtesy of aloshbennet, Flickr

Replied the master, “If I followed your advice, I would wake up everyday and do nothing. What you are seemingly advocating as courageous faith is really a cowardly act of avoiding responsibility. What your God would probably want you to do is to have some spine and own up to the decisions you make. Realize that whatever happens to you is no one’s fault but your own (yes, it’s not even God’s fault even though you’re too afraid to admit that you blame him). Realize too, that nothing is ever good or bad. It is only within a particular situation or frame of reference that they are good or bad for you.”

“This is the key to wisdom: Be a mirror. A mirror reflects but never judges whether what is reflected is beautiful or ugly. It simply shows reality as it is. Be a mirror. Be silent. Judge not.”

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