. . . I've been told that I write novels for email messages. Perhaps this is the way to go. I'll try to make each entry, or Gemstone, a "precious" one. On mediocre days, all I might be able to produce is a "semi-precious" entry. In any case, an entry might be a "neat" Gemstone--something that is uniquely mine.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

A Story for Sunday

This morning's "Story for All Ages" at church was about treasure hunting. In Krakow, Poland, long ago, there was a large Jewish community. They had a Rabbi (minister and teacher), Isaac, son of Rabbi Yakel. The community of Krakow was very poor, so poor that they didn't have a place of prayer that they could go to on their sabbath day. They had to meet in homes as a community. One night as Rabbi Isaac slept, a messenger came to him in a dream telling him that if he goes to the city of Prague (in another country) and looks underneath the bridge leading to the king's castle, he will find a wonderful treasure that he can take home to his people.

Rabbi Isaac woke up from the dream, thinking how odd it was, but forgot about it as the day went on. Until the next night when he fell asleep and had the dream again. The messenger told him again that if he goes to the city of Prague and looks underneath the bridge leading to the king's castle, he'll find a marvelous treasure that he can take home back to his people. And again, Isaac woke and thought how odd the dream was and forgot about it as the day went on.

The third night, the dream came again, and again the messenger told Isaac that if he goes to the city of Prague and looks under the bridge that leads to the castle of the king, there will be a great treasure there that he could take back to his people. Now after three times, Isaac woke up and decided that he would go to Prague. It was a sign. He leaves immediately and wears out the soles of his shoes as he walked to Prague.

He comes to the bridge leading to where the castle of the king is in the city of Prague, but he doesn't look under the bridge immediately because the bridge is constantly guarded. But every morning Isaac wakes up from where he's camping and walks around the bridge. He looks at it again and again and the guards begin to notice this stranger walking around the bridge. Finally, the captain of the guard approaches Isaac and asks him why he's walking around the bridge. "What are you waiting for?" asked the captain. Rabbi Isaac replies, "I had a dream where a messenger came to me telling me to come to Prague where I'll find a treasure under the bridge leading to the castle of the king that I could take back to my people.

The captain asked him, "Why would you walk all the way to Prague for a treasure that might not even be here? Why would you listen to a dream? If I listened to a dream a few months ago, I would have left immediately and walked all the way to the city of Krakow, dug under the stove of a Rabbai named Isaac, son of a Rabbai named Yakel. There must be hundreds of Rabbis named Isaac with fathers named Yakel. Foolish!"

Isaac nodded, turned back around, and walked all the way back to Krakow. Then he dug under his stove and he found the great treasure and they built a house of prayer for the community.

Moral: Sometimes the treasures we're looking for are right here under our noses. Sometimes we need other people to tell us where they are.

Paraphrased from the story told by Rev. John Cullinan at the Unitarian Church of Los Alamos, November 1, 2009.


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