from Orthodoxy

If the miller’s third son said to the fairy, “Explain why I must not stand on my head in the fairy palace,” the other might fairly reply, “Well, if it comes to that, explain the fairy palace.” If Cinderella says, “How is it that I must leave the ball at twelve?” her godmother might answer, “How is it that you are going there till twelve?” If I leave a man in my will ten talking elephants and a hundred winged horses, he cannot complain if the conditions partake of the slight eccentricity of the gift. He must not look a winged horse in the mouth. And it seemed to me that existence was itself so very eccentric a legacy that I could not complain of not understanding the limitations of the vision when I did not understand the vision they limited. The frame was no stranger than the picture.

If I could keep all hundred of the winged horses, I should so gladly accept and not look one in the mouth. Why would I complain about a limitation, that is, the manner in which I am allowed a thing, if the thing is already so extraordinary it’s a wonder I am allowed to have it at all?

If I marvel that I live and breathe, have two legs and a mind that computes, and the only thing I am asked to do is not to worry*, I should gladly accept the limitation because I value the gift. The fact that I think, observe, retain, and conclude is amazement. To persist in gloominess would be a mistake. Not only do I look the winged horse in the mouth, but expect it to groom and feed itself, too!

*Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things (Philippians 4:8)

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