The Monk and the Missionary
Posted On: 2022-03-03

There is an old story of the missionary Sadhu Sundar Singh. He was traveling through the Himalayas with a Monk in the bitter cold. Night was coming and the Monk said, "If we don't reach the monastery by nightfall, we are in danger of freezing to death." Just as they reached a narrow path, they heard the cries of a man who had fallen over the edge. The Monk said, "Do not stop. God has brought him to his fate. He must work it out himself."

Sadhu replied, "God sent me here to help my brother. I cannot abandon him." The Monk went on and Sadhu climbed down a steep path. When he found the man, he saw that his leg was broken and he could not walk. Sadhu made a sling from his blanket and tied the man to his back. He then began a body torturing climb. He made his way through the deepening snow. It was dark>and it was all he could do to follow the path. He preserved, and faint with exhaustion, he finally saw the lights of the Monastery. As he moved toward the light, he stumbled for the first time and nearly fell. He did not stumble from exhaustion but over an object. As he brushed the snow off the object, he looked down and saw that it was the body of the Monk.

Years later when a student asked him, "What is life's most difficult task?" he replied, "To have no burden to carry."

-- Thanks to Alan R. Houser, Scoutmaster, Berkeley Troop 24,