A rite of passage

 Do you know the legend of the Cherokee Indian youth’s rite of passage?  All the young boys go through this trial as a rite of passage to manhood.  

In the afternoon of the day of the trial, the boy’s father takes him deep into the forest, blindfolds him and leaves him alone. The boy is required to sit on a tree stump throughout whole night and not remove the blindfold until the rays of the morning sun shine through it. He must not cry out for help.  Once he survives the night, he is a man. He cannot tell the other boys of this experience because each boy must come into manhood on his own.   

The boy is naturally terrified. He can hear all kinds of noises as the wild night animals wake up ready to start hunting. The wind blows, he hears the grass rustling…. or is it an animal checking out his scent? He hears the insects buzzing, some land on him. He sits stoically, quivering with fear yet never removing the blindfold.   

Finally, after a horrific night, the sun appears and he removes the blindfold.  It is then that he discovers his father sitting on the stump next to him.  His father had been watching the entire night, protecting his son from harm.   

We, too, are never alone.  Even when we do not know it, our Heavenly Father is watching over us, sitting on the stump beside us. When trouble comes, all we have to do is reach out to Him.  

Just because you cannot see God, it does not mean that He is not there.