Saturday, January 19, 2013

The Donkey who carried a King.

 The Donkey Who Carried a King

     When little Reilly comes home weeping because he is chosen last for the boy's games, Grandpa asks Reilly if he has ever told him the story of the Donkey who carried the King.
    "'No, Grandpa,' he said, 'I’ve never heard that story, but I’d love to hear it now.' So Grandpa sat down, and Reilly sat on his knee. Reilly didn’t feel too old for that." One of my favorite parts of Dr. Sproul's books is the presence of a wise, dignified, loving, Godly Grandfather in each book.

    "'You know, Reilly,' Grandpa started, 'several years ago, I went to Jerusalem, and I saw a funny sight. Lots of people rode on little donkeys. The donkeys in Jerusalem are small compared to the ones here in America. They only grow to be about three or three and a half feet high.' "
      There once was a little donkey named David, called Davey. Davey was all alone in a little pen, and he felt sad that he was never chosen to do any important work. Other donkeys, like Old Barnabas, had wonderful stories about work they had done. Old Barnabas was a wise old donkey, and he was once owned by a young carpenter named Joseph. Once, Barnabas had carried Joseph's wife on a long journey to pay their taxes. Joseph's wife had given birth to a very special Baby- a Baby who was Born to Save His people.  Davey loved listening to Barnabas tell him this story.

     Then one day came when two men came to Davey's owner,  and they wanted a donkey. They said simply "The Lord has need of Him." Davey was brought to a kind man who rode him into the city, and as they went into the city people stood beside the road throwing down their cloaks for Davey to walk over and shouting Hosanna! The King of Israel is Coming! Davey was carrying the King! This was the Baby Barnabas had carried, and now David was carrying Him!

 Davey was very proud of Himself, knowing he had carried the King.
 After that, the owner began to let Davey carry burdens. Olives and Grapes. Heavy burdens. Davey was not carrying a King, he was carrying burdens. Burdens so heavy they made him stumble and fall.
David was not proud to be worked this way. He had carried the King!

One day, a servant was leading the laden Davey through the city, when Davey saw the gentle King again. The King was covered in cuts and bruises. People had slapped Him and spit on Him and he had been hurt. No one was helping him, instead he was carrying a long wooden beam on his torn back. As Davey watched, the King fell to the ground under its weight.
 Davey was pulled away by the servant, but he was heartbroken. Why the King carrying such heavy burdens?
When Davey returns to the pen Old Barnabas gently tells him that part of being the King who saves His people was carrying that beam- it was His cross beam, on which He would die.

Davey was amazed. “So the King was being a servant to others,” he said. “Yes, Davey,” Barnabas said. “It is a terrible thing that He is being treated so badly. But what He is doing is wonderful.”

"He was a King, but He was a servant to His people.” Grandpa explains. And Davey has lessons to teach us- about being content with any job we are given, about not being too proud to carry the wheat after carrying the King, about being thankful for the strength to do our job, and most of all about learning from the King who carried the Cross-beam, who fell on the ground under His burden as He walked to a death that would save us. “And do you know what, Reilly?" Adds Grandpa "Jesus didn’t stay dead. He rose again from the grave three days later and He reigns forever with His Father in heaven. That’s the best news of all.” The Donkey Who Carried a King is a lovely book that looks at Carrying the Cross and carrying our crosses from the eyes of a dear little donkey.

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