Tuesday, April 17, 2018
Power of prayer: ..and the mountain moved
In 1225 the Caliph of Baghdad and Mosul hated Christians so much he spent his waking moments thinking of ways to make them converts. Those who refused were killed. His advisers hatched a plan, which related to the Old Testament belief if a Christian had as much faith as a grain of mustard; he could, by praying to his God, move mountains. He summoned together the Christian leaders and offered the following proposal. The Christians had to use divine power to move a mountain that neighboured the city. Failure to achieve this objective in ten days would require conversion to the religion of Mohammed, or death. This caused great concern to the Christian community and for eight days and nights they prayed. On the eighth night, an angel appeared to a particularly saintly bishop and said.’ Go to the cross-eyed shoe maker and tell him to pray for the mountain to be moved.’
The shoemaker was an honest man who lived a chaste life, was a good Christian and shared his food with the poor. He was well known because as a young man he was not always so. A young woman came to his shop to buy a pair of shoes. She was beautiful and the shoemaker asked to see her uncovered legs and feet. Temptation and lechery overcame him and he misbehaved. In the Old Testament when the eye offended, it had to be plucked out and that was what the shoemaker did. He deliberately blinded his eye with a shoemaker’s awl and became a virtuous and devout man thereafter. The Christians begged him to pray for them and eventually he agreed and the mountain moved.