Thursday, September 03, 2009

Here's an FLA I once wrote

... to try to explain to a Protestant about grace and merit, indulgences and communion of saints. If this blog had readers, I would hope one would tell me if it is fatuous to the point of embarrassment.

Suppose you love your young son one bright day and make a plan to show him that love. So, you promise to buy him a bicycle that happens to be worth, say, $300—quite a lot of money, though you don’t tell him that. All you ask is that he be a good boy and behave himself. You plan to pick it up for him on Friday (payday) though he has done nothing to deserve it particularly. But all his past less-than-perfect behavior is forgotten. Suppose then, on Wednesday, he misbehaves and breaks a valuable lamp as a direct result. You are no longer so inclined to buy the bike for him, and he runs weeping to his room. However, on Thursday, he comes to you, contrite as the day is long. He quite seriously offers to pay for the lamp (which you know he could not possibly afford to do) and to forgo the bike. Convinced that his repentance is true, your heart rekindles and you offer him a deal. If he will clean his room every Friday for a month (Is it a job you’d value at anywhere close to $300? Not even thirty), then you will buy him the bike anyway. He accepts and gives his word. Next day, out of your paycheck, you lay out $200 for a new lamp yourself. Now suppose the boy, true to his word, maintains exemplary behavior for the month and also does a tip-top job (for his age) of cleaning his room on each of the next three Fridays. (On the third Friday, his younger brother, caught up in the excitement, helps him). On the day before the final Friday (payday, again), smiling indulgently, you tell him to go give his Mother a big hug and kiss in lieu of cleaning his room the following day. He does so, positively beaming, and the next day you bring home the shiny new Schwinn. After all, you tell yourself, he earned it.


Anonymous said...

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


cricket said...

Thank you for your comment, Margaret. I wouldn't visit too often; it'd be like watching a pot boil or paint dry. But go ahead and tell your friends anyway (no more than two).

And in future, please do not hesitate to contribute to the comment box. I treasure especially the negative comments and insults.

muffinmaiden said...

glad to, but first let me google "fatuous"

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I'd be a blackguard and a cad, if I weren't so ineffectual. The less said "About Me", the better.