Sometimes one of the hardest things we must do is to let go. One day a young boy found a shivering little bird under a nest. Feeling sorry for it, he
took the bird inside and put it by the fire where it soon revived. However instead of letting the little bird go back to its nest the boy built a cage for the
bird and placed it inside. In the cage he gave the bird lots of food and drink and warmth.
The little bird thrived and began to fly around the cage. Next it began to sing. The boy was thrilled. But one day it started to beat its wings against
the cage sides. The boy asked his grandfather what this meant. ”It’s not happy,” Grandad replied.
“But I don’t understand,” answered the boy. “Hasn’t it got everything it needs in the cage?”
“Yes,” replied Grandad, “everything, except the one thing every little bird longs for.”
“What’s that?” asked the boy.
“Freedom,” came the reply.
“You mean that after all I have done for the bird, it now wants to leave me?”
“It just wants to be free so that it can be a bird like other birds.”
“But how can I let it go?” the boy persisted. “It knows nothing about the
dangers that lie in wait for little birds out in the world. It might get killed.”
“That is a risk you will have to take,” answered Grandad.
“But I love it too much to let it go.”
“If you really loved it you would let it go.!”
The little boy grew silent. He looked at the bird. It continued to beat its wings against the cage. With every beat it seemed to say, “Set me free. Set
me free.” Unable to endure it any longer he let the bird go. As it flew out the window it took a piece of his heart with it. The boy stared out the window for
a long time. Then he heard the bird singing in the tree. The singing sounded better than ever before and the boy felt free, happy and at peace.
The disciples didn’t want to let go of Jesus but they were only thinking of themselves. Jesus made it clear that once he had gone the apostles would
receive another gift, the gift of the Holy Spirit. In life we often have to let go of something in order to receive a greater gift.