As an old monk and a little boy were walking through a forest, the monk pointed to four plants.
The First was just beginning to peep above the ground;
the Second had rooted itself pretty well;
the Third was a small shrub;
and the Fourth was a tree.
“Pull up the first,” the monk said. The boy pulled it up with his fingers.
“Now pull up the second.” The boy obeyed, but not so easily.
“Now the third”. The boy had to put forth all his strength to uproot it.
“Now”, said the master, “try the fourth.” But the little fellow could scarcely shake the leaves.
“Now,” said the master, “try the fourth.” But the little fellow could scarcely shake the leaves.
“This,” the monk said, “is what happens with our thoughts and feelings. When we’re young and our thoughts and feelings are weak, we may be able to tear them out easily, but if we let them cast their roots deep into our souls, then only God’s almighty hand can pull them out. So, watch well over the first movements of your soul and ask God to help you keep your thoughts and feelings well in check”.