The story has been told of a kindly carpenter
who with loving, gentle hands created a little boy-marionette.
He loved this little marionette, and longed for his love, in return.
One night it happened that the little marionette was given life,
and the strings that had tied him to his creator were suddenly removed.
The little puppet-boy was then given a conscience,
and was allowed to go out into the world.
The kindly carpenter carefully instructed the puppet-boy
as to what he should do, and where he should go.
But now the strings were no longer there.
So the puppet-boy struck out on his own
not realizing that new, invisible strings were wrapping around him,
drawing him toward the very things that his conscience warned him against.
The puppet-boy soon became so entangled in a worldly-web
that he was nearly lost forever.
But at last he looked around at his friends, only to see by their
new, hideous forms what they truly were; and what he, himself, was becoming.
In desperation, he followed his conscience and fled his worldly bonds.
The puppet-boy realized, then, that the old strings that had tied him
to the kindly carpenter had been for his own good.
So with his conscience by his side, he set off for home.
But to his shame and dismay, he discovered that the kindly carpenter
had gone out into the world to search for him;
that he had suffered a great deal in his search,
and had finally been swallowed by a giant whale.
It was in that very whale’s belly that the puppet-boy,
still bearing the marks of his worldly woes, found the kindly carpenter;
no doubt bruised and bleeding from his desperate search,
but opening his arms up wide to welcome in his long-lost boy.
And though the way was not easy, the puppet-boy this time
stayed close to the kindly carpenter as he followed him home.
It was there that the puppet-boy finally realized
the great love that the kindly carpenter had for him,
having seen the carpenter’s willingness to lay aside his own life,
even knowing that his little puppet-boy had chosen to love the world instead.
The puppet-boy then begged to be set free from the strings of the world
to be a true son to his beloved creator.
My friend, do you see it?
We are like this marionette, lovingly created by a kindly Carpenter.
And in His desire that we would choose to love Him in return,
He lets us go…out into the world to decide our own path.
But just as the puppet-boy found, we are not really without strings.
For if we choose to reject the ties to our Creator,
then the lures of this world will pull us in and entangle us.
But in His great love for us, our kindly Carpenter, Jesus,
came into the world to seek and save us.
And when we finally turn to Him, we will find,
to our shame and dismay…a cross.
For our loving Carpenter had to suffer for our sins,
and give His own life, so He could free us to come back to Him,
as His true children.
My friend, we are not free without Christ.
We are either chained to this world and its sin,
or lovingly bound up in our Heavenly Father’s care.
The only real freedom we have
is the freedom to choose who will hold the key.
And if you give yours to Christ,
He can set you free!
"Jesus answered them, 'Most assuredly, I say to you,
whoever commits sin is a slave of sin…
if the Son makes you free,
you shall be free indeed.'"
©Lisa (Kesinger) DeVinney, November 2008