A Drowning boy was struggling in the water. On shore stood his mother in an agony of fright and grief. By her side stood a strong man seemingly indifferent to the boy's fate. Again and again did the suffering mother appeal to him to save her boy. But he made no move.
By and by, the desperate struggles of the boy began to abate. He was losing strength. Presently he arose to the surface, weak and helpless. At once the strong man leaped into the stream and brought the boy in safety to the shore.
"Why did you not save my boy sooner?" cried the now grateful mother. "Madam, I could not save your boy so long as he struggled. He would have dragged us both to certain death. But when he grew weak, and ceased to struggle, then it was easy to save him."
To struggle to save ourselves is simply to hinder Christ from saving us. To come to the place of faith, we must pass from the place of effort to the place of accepted helplessness. Our very efforts to save ourselves turn us aside from that attitude of helpless dependence upon Christ which is the one attitude we need to take in order that He may save us. It is only when we "cease from our own works" and depend thus helplessly upon Him that we realize how perfectly able He is to save without any aid from us.
Taken from the The Friend: A Religious and Literary Journal, Vol. 82-83, 1910.