Once upon a time two young boys Apotheo and Popinjay lived in a small village near the foot of giant mountain. One day while the ten-year olds fished by a blue stream, a large carriage came down the road and stopped near them. A man climbed out and walked down to them.
“Have you any caught anything,” he asked.
“No,” Popinjay answered.
“Would you like to fish?” Apotheo asked him.
“Why certainly!” So the small boy offered him his pole.
After catching two fish larger than either of the boys had ever seen, the man thanked them and said he must go on his way. He told them that he was a great and powerful king and that he was searching for subjects in his kingdom who would love and faithfully serve him. The boys, sensing a rare opportunity, said they would do so. Delighted by their spirit he walked to his carriage reached inside and pulled out a cage covered by a beautiful purple tapestry. He pulled off the cover to reveal a bright-eyed kaka.
The king said, “Boys, I leave you my special friend. She will teach you about me and how to get the most out of life if you faithfully love her. At the end of three years, you must release her. She will fly until she finds me and tell me if you are indeed worthy followers. If you are, you will be richly rewarded. Then as suddenly as he had appeared, he was gone.
The boys excitedly ran to the village and told their parents about the king and showed them the parrot and the two large fish. But then the question arose as to who would keep the bird. Apotheo kindly deferred to his friend so Popinjay took the cage and its winged occupant home.
A month later, Popinjay and Apotheo met to fish. Popinjay said, “Apotheo, I want you to take that stupid bird. All she does is sit and look at me. I can’t even get a squawk out of her. I’ve told her she’s lucky to live in my room, and I’ve warned her that if she won’t help me I’ll take her out of her cage so she can meet my cat. Still she only stares. I’m busy. I don’t have time to waste with a dumb bird. I don’t think that man knew what he was talking about; I bet he wasn’t a king.”
Apotheo gladly took the kaka to his home. With the help of his father, he made a beautiful oak stand for the cage. Every day at the break of dawn he went out and found worms to feed the bird. Then he sat and sang her his favorite songs. He took her outside for walks and carefully cared for her. By the end of six months, she practically lived on his shoulder. Most of the villagers laughed at him for wasting his time with a mute parrot. He didn’t care. He remembered the stranger’s words and loved the kaka.
One morning as he prepared to go outside to find her breakfast, a melodious voice said, “Thank you for your kindness to me Apotheo.” The stunned boy turned and looked at her. “Thank you for your kindness to me Apotheo.” A tear plunged from his eyes. “O Kaka, you really can speak!”
“Of course I can speak and with you I gladly do so.”
From that day on, whenever Apotheo and those who respected her were around, she taught them about life and her Master. For everyone else she remained silent. By the end of three years, she was Apotheo’s best, beloved friend. Still, he remembered the stranger’s command that his parrot should be released. So, with a saddened heart, he let her go. She thanked him again for his kindness and flew away from a young man sure he would never see her again.
Three lonely days passed before Apotheo and Popinjay again decided to go fishing. While Apotheo reminisced with his unbelieving friend about the incredible kaka, a carriage pulled alongside. The king stepped out. Instantly, Apotheo fell to the ground in great respect! His friend, feeling a strange terror, froze—unable to recognize the kaka’s master. The king walked by him to Apotheo, placed a robe around his shoulders, and invited him into his carriage. Down the road they traveled leaving a bewildered Popinjay to wonder.
2 Peter 1:3,4—As we know Jesus better, His divine power gives us everything we need for living a godly life. He has called us to receive His own glory and goodness! And by that same mighty power, He has given us all of His rich and wonderful promises. He has promised that you will escape the decadence all around you caused by evil desires and that you will share in His divine nature. (NLT)
©2002 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)