Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Longing for God

There's a story of a young disciple in India who left home and traveled in search of a spiritual master whom he at last found sitting in prayer beside a river. The young man begged the master to teach him. The master rose slowly and suddenly grabbed the younger man and dragged him into the river and under the water. Seconds passed, then a minute, then another minute. The young man struggled and kicked, but still the teacher held him down until at last he drew him coughing and gasping out of the water. "While you were under the water, what was it you wanted?" the teacher asked, when he saw that the other was at last able to speak again. "Air," the young man said, still panting. "And how badly did you want it?" "All . . . it was all I wanted in the world. With my whole soul I longed only for air." "Good," said the teacher. "When you long for God in the same way that you have just now longed for air, come back to me and you will become a disciple."
Told by John A. Huffman, Jr., "Essential Qualities for a 21st Century Faith: Worship," 22 November 2001, St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church, Newport Beach, California

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