“Yes,” answered Mrs. Owen. “You are worried, aren’t you, because you’ve asked God to make you walk properly, and He hasn’t, and you can’t understand why?”
Philippa nodded. Her eyes were fixed on Mrs. Owen’s face as though she was listening to some wonderful secret.
“I think it’s like this,” said Mrs. Owen, speaking very slowly. “Supposing a ragged, homeless boy came to my door and asked me for fifty pence. I could give him fifty pence and send him away, or I could do something far better. I could say to him, ‘I’m not going to give you fifty pence, but I’m going to take you into my home and love you and wash you clean and care for you, and make you my own little child.’ If I said that, do you think that little boy would go on worrying about his fifty pence? he’d know that I loved him enough to give him every single thing he needed.”
“Is the fifty pence like my legs?” asked Philippa. She was a very quick child in some ways.
“A little bit,” answered Mrs. Owen. “You’ve asked the Lord Jesus to give you strong legs, and He’s looking down at you and saying, ‘Philippa, I’ve got something far better for you than that. I love you, and I want you to be My own little girl. I want to save you from all your crossness and sadness and selfishness, and I want to make you happy.’ Of course, later on He may give you strong legs as well, and you can go on asking Him. But first of all He wants to teach you that if you belong to Him, you can be happy even lying here on this couch.”
Rainbow Garden by Patricia St. John (1960)