“Why can’t we get all the people together in the world that we really like and then just stay together? I guess that wouldn’t work. Someone would leave. Someone always leaves. Then we would have to say good-bye. I hate good-byes. I know what I need. I need more hellos.” Snoopy (Fictional character from the comic strip Peanuts, by Charles M. Schulz)
There was an old man on the isle of Crete and during his lifetime he loved many things. He loved his wife, his children and his job, but most of all he loved the land. He loved the very ground he walked on, worked and fought for. When it was time for him to die he had sons bring him outside his stone cottage and lay him on the hard earth. He reached down, grabbed a handful of Crete’s soil and was gone.
He arrived at the gates of heaven and the Lord came out dressed in the long robes of a judge and said to him, “Old man, come in.”
As the old man moved towards the gates the Lord noticed something in his hand and said,” what are you clutching in your hand?” He said, ” It is Crete, I go nowhere without it”.The Lord said, “leave it, or you will not be allowed in.” The old man held his clenched fist up and said, “Never!” And he went and sat beside the outside wall of the heavenly city.
After a week had passed, the gates opened again and the Lord appeared a second time, in the guise of a man wearing a hat, looking like some of the old man’s buddies down in Crete. He sat down next to the old man, threw His arm around his shoulder and said, “My friend, dust belongs in the wind. Drop that piece of earth and come inside.” But the old man was still adamant. He said, “Never!” During the third week the old man looked down at the earth he was clutching and saw that it had begun to cake and crumble. All of the moisture of the earth had gone out of it. Also, his fingers were athritic and could not handle it. The earth began to trickle through his fingers.
Out came the Lord, this time as a small child. He came up to to the old man and sat next to him and said, “Grandfather, the gates only open for those with open hands.”
The old man thought about this, finally stood up, and did not even look at his hand opened and the crumbled dirt of Crete fell through he sky. The child took his hand and led him toward the glorious gates, and as the gates swung open he walked in. Inside was wall of Crete!
Now don’t build a theology on this story for that is what it is -a story that illustrates a point that many of us must be reminded of now and then. There is nothing here that is worth missing heaven in order to keep. -Robert Strand
Let us hold lightly those things which are temporary but treasure everything which have true values-those spiritual things.
We came here naked, and we will return to Him-still with nothing except our soul which will give account of every thing we do- be it good or bad!
Say goodbye to your favorite sins and learn to live righteously before Him.
God be Praised!