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Would you like to meet the king?

There once was a little boy who wanted to meet the king. He set off, walking across the beautiful countryside towards the king's castle. He walked and walked, thinking of all the wonderful things that he and the king would talk about, and he imagined how beautiful the castle was. He was just a little boy, and wanted so much just to talk to the king and be in his presence.

Finally, after many long days of walking, the king's castle came into view. It was even more majestic than the boy had imagined! He couldn't wait to tell the king how beautiful everything was and how much he had enjoyed his walk across the countryside. The boy began to run towards the castle!

However, as the boy drew closer to the outside of the castle, he noticed guards. Watchtowers were bristling with firepower, and the guards had mean looks on their faces. The boy slowed down...then stopped. The guards noticed him, and drew their weapons, striking menacing postures. They looked right at him!

"I just want to see the king...." the little boy began in a halting voice.

"Get out of here!" growled the guards.

Well, the little boy didn't have to be told twice. After all that walking, after all that thinking, after all that wishing and hoping, he turned...and ran, scared beyond measure.

He began to cry. All he wanted to do was tell the king wonderful things, and see all the beautiful things in the king's house. But he couldn't even get near the castle! The boy finally stopped running and sat down and cried.

A young man happened to be coming down the path at that very moment. He was carrying a sack of groceries and whistling a pretty tune. He saw the little boy and stopped.

"What's wrong, young man? Why so sad?" he asked.

"Sir, I walked and walked and walked just to see the king and there were these guards and I was scared and I wanted to tell the king how lovely everything is and see all the neat things in his castle and play and just tell the king that I just wanted to see him!!" wailed the little boy.

"Whoa! Slow down a little. Sounds like you've had a rough time today." With that, the man set down his grocery sack and began to rummage through it. "Would you like some apple juice?" asked the man.

"Yes, thanks. I don't think I'll ever go back there!"

The man looked at the little boy thoughtfully. "Look, why don't you try again. I'll come with you this time."

"Hey look mister, you haven't seen these guards. They're big! And mean! They yelled at me!"

The man smiled at the little boy, who was obviously concerned for his (the man's) safety. He stood up and dusted himself off.

"C'mon with me. Maybe we can find something to eat along the way." the man said, holding out his hand.

The little boy looked up at the man, and looked in the direction of the castle. He was so close! Well, he reasoned, even if I can't see the king, maybe I can get something to eat before I begin my walk home.

With that, the little boy got up and took the man's hand. He gripped the man's hand tighter and tighter as they got closer to the king's castle. Finally, the king's guards spotted them: one very frightened boy holding the hand of a man with a sack of groceries. As they drew close, the little boy could stand it no more.

"Look, mister, we don't have to do this...I don't want you to get hurt. I'll just be on my way. It was nice of you to stop...thanks for the juice...we can just turn around now..." the boy began to babble again.

The man held the little boy's hand firmly and said, "Child, you've come this far...how about trusting me a little longer? Let's just see what happens."

"OK...."

The pair came closer to the castle and the guards watched them approach. The man looked down and winked at the boy. The boy really thought the man might be crazy...until he looked back up at the guards. They were smiling now!! The two that looked the toughest and meanest grinned fit to split! They even lowered the drawbridge to the castle. The little boy was amazed!

"Who are you?" asked the little boy in astonishment.

"Why, I'm the King's Son. By placing your trust and faith in Me, you can enter the Castle and be with the King," said the man.

The little boy broke into a huge smile.

"Can I go home and tell my parents about You?" asked the little boy. "Then they can come to visit, too!"

Jesus threw His head back and laughed. He thought that was the best thing that anyone could do.

Would you like to see the King? Let me introduce you to His Son....

- Unknown

Contributed by Sara Caruso