Late in the night of one beautiful day, a king received ambassadors from a far country into his massive kingdom. The ambassadors were tired from the long journey and needed to rest, but the king wouldn’t allow them, not until he had treated them to a sumptuous dinner in his palace.
He commanded one of his trusted servants to prepare the table and make it ready for dinner. The servant would have to get to nearby store to pick up some special requests to complement the dinner. The king asked this trusted servant to take one of the vehicles, as he could not risk the sad news of him coming back with excuses. He left in obedience and enthusiasm; set to fulfill the master’s will.
But on the lonely highway, he encountered a road block. At first, he wanted to reverse and run back, suspecting armed bandits operating and he didn’t want to fall victim. But he thought he saw a hand raised up and heard a faint voice of a cry for help. He stood for a while and observed the more; he was right. It was an accident scene.
He raced to the scene and saw a man sprawled in the pool of his own blood, apparently wobbled himself out of the wreckage of his vehicle. The damage on the vehicle made him to think how a lone accident could be that fatal. He suspected a hit and run driver who is now at large. He tried to get others to help by waving down motorists, but no one stopped. So, he managed to drag the victim into his vehicle to take him to a nearby hospital. The man was barely alive: a little help and a minute in time could be all he needed to live. He was determined to give that.
He made it to the hospital in good time and beckoned to the medical personnel on duty to take over, while he completed the master’s assignment. But to his puzzlement, the management would not accept, let alone treat the victim. Their policy was that such accident victim must be accompanied by a police officer or a warrant of treatment issued by them, without which they could not accept to treat the victim. He had none and he tried to explain the circumstances surrounding the situation, but they were firm in their decision.
How callous, he thought. He raked at them, begged and employed all manner of means to convince them, but none helped, including disclosing his identity. They all watched the man dying, but explained that they could not go against the law.
He took the victim to another hospital and the same protocol ensued. He decided to take him to a General Hospital where he knew such inhumane protocol would not be applicable, but that was a long way off.
He suddenly remembered the errand, the important, but tired guests from a far country who must be fed before they slept, and the confidence reposed on him by his master to send him for such important and sensitive errand: he was confused. He decided to quickly go to the store to get what he needed before the stores would close, then afterwards, take the man to the hospital. He knew that was impossible; to carry a wounded and half-dead man around town. He remembered the virtue of saving lives. He also remembered the disposition of the king towards such act. He tried to weigh saving a life and buying food, he chose the former.
At last, he got to the General Hospital, beyond asking for his name, address and refundable commitment fee, nothing else was required except to thank him for such a brave and humane act, especially, knowing that he was the king’s servant. The victim was moved straight into the theatre for immediate surgical attention. The man would live, the surgeon assured him. He heaved a sigh of relief, at least that the burden of carrying a wounded and half dead man was off his neck.
At this time, he realized that all restaurants would have closed and that the king would no longer worry about the food, but about him. He was troubled about what he would tell the king. He consoled himself with the fact that he had carried out a noble act of saving a life. He started to make his way back home in order not to get the king unnecessarily apprehensive about him.
On his way back, he noticed that a store was still open: his joy knew no bounds. He quickly made a turn and sped to the place with excitement and joy. He was happy and verbally expressed his thanks to God for giving him the grace to pass the test. He suspected that it was a test from God to see what he would do in face of such tough decision: to chose to save a dying life, or to get what the king needed. Now he did both!
He placed the order, and within a short while, the order was ready. Just as he was about to pay, he discovered that he had used the money on him as a deposit for the surgery for the accident victim in the excitement that he would be immediately taken to the theatre and he would live. He did it gladly, more so that he believed all stores would have closed! Now, here was the order, but he had no money to pay for it.
He explained to the manager of the store, even disclosing his identity and showing receipt of deposit for the surgery. The manager told him he understood every bit of his explanation, but he was an employee and could not go against the rules and policy of the establishment, or else, he would be sacked. He wished he could help, but he was really sorry there was nothing he could do. All pleas, appeal and entreaties failed. He was so mad with himself he felt like a big fool and failure.
Not knowing what else to do again, he returned to the palace, with the consolation that at least, the accident victim lived. Perhaps, that was the only reason why he went out and it was worth it. The man could have died as no one was ready to wait to attend to him. He remembered the story of the Good Samaritan that the king had often told them about, stressing the need to always do good, regardless of the situation.
As the king was getting more apprehensive and worried that the servant was yet to return and was embarrassed before his guests, another servant appeared in a hurry and excitement to announce his arrival. With mixed feelings and without bothering to ask the servant why the delay, (he could do that after his guests have eaten and slept), he ushered his guests to move to the dining table for the meal. There, it was discovered that both the king and his guests would starve for the night!
The palace was in disarray, the king was visibly angry and all the servants and the king’s household knew all hell would break loose. The king’s guards and marksmen were summoned, awaiting the king’s standing order on rebellious and recalcitrant servants.
The king’s guests waded in, pacifying the king and encouraging him to sound his servant out first, before giving order since he was his most trusted servant. On his, knees and with tears, the servant explained everything, praying that the king perhaps, might save his life.
The king was touched, so also were his guests and the king’s household when they heard the pathetic case and the heroic feat of the servant, especially, that the accident victim’s life was saved and on the king’s bill and goodwill and the will receive praises and honour from all.
The king was so proud of the servant: he commended and rewarded him before all, for the life that he saved and asked other servants to applaud him for honouring him and making his name great publicly. He however, asked his marksmen to take him away to the dungeon, awaiting execution, for failing to do His perfect will.
*Do the good you can, but more importantly, do the will of God – Bola Olu-Jordan.
*Do not allow the burden of doing good overshadow the necessity of obeying God – Bola Olu-Jordan