A monkey lived a very happy life in a tree with a two of his monkey friends. They all got along very well until one day, one of the monkeys disappeared. The two remaining monkeys were very confused. Their friend never said anything about leaving.
The following day, a second monkey disappeared as well. This left just one monkey in the tree. He wasn’t very happy anymore. He missed his friends. He was worried about them.
A wild boar was walking along the trunk of the tree. “Where are your friends, monkey?” he shouted up into the branches.
The monkey was so sad that he couldn’t answer. The boar became very suspicious of the monkey and went on his way.
A colorful macaw bird landed on a branch nearby the monkey. “Where are your friends?” she asked. But the monkey didn’t answer. It appeared to the bird that the monkey was talking to himself.
The macaw flew to the lion to report what he saw. He saw the wild boar already there speaking with him. The bird and the boar told the lion that they believed the monkey had done something horrible to his friends.
The lion was very protective of the animals of the jungle. He gathered together lions and tigers and panthers to confront the monkey. He recruited a few gorillas to bring down the monkey from the branches if necessary.
When they arrived at the monkey’s tree, he was still sitting silently on the branches.
They shouted at him to come down, but he didn’t come down. The lion sent the gorillas up the tree to fetch the monkey. They climbed up and seized the animal, who still seemed to be talking to himself.
“What do you have to say for yourself?” the lion asked.
The monkey was in tears. “My friends are gone, sir. I don’t know where they are, but I have hope that they will return,” he said looking up to the sky.
“Do you claim to have no part in their disappearance?” asked the lion.
“No, of course not,” said the monkey. “Unless I said something to them to make them want to go. I don’t know. Maybe it is my fault. Maybe I am responsible.”
“See you heard him say it!” said the macaw.
“Yes, he is indeed guilty,” said the wild boar.
The monkey was shocked. He started to speak to himself again. This made all the animals think he was crazy. As the monkey spoke, clouds began to appear in the sky above the trees. Rain suddenly started to fall and thunder could be heard in the distance.
“Well, do it! Kill him,” said the panther again.
The monkey continued to mumble.
Lightning crashed down and struck the tree. A branch fell down upon the ground. The lion ordered them all to take cover from the storm.
As they searched for cover, one of the tigers found the two missing monkeys. They were trapped at the bottom of a big pit and they could not climb out.
The rain poured down and the water raised them high enough for the gorillas to work together to fetch them out.
The rain stopped and the monkeys explained how they had accidentally stepped into the pit. The first monkey fell in looking for food. The second monkey fell in looking for the one that was missing.
The animals all apologized to the accused monkey and let him go. The macaw and the boar apologized for their mistake.
The monkey forgave them all for accusing him. He looked up into the sky where the clouds remained overhead and said, “Thank you.”
“Lord, my God, in you I trusted; save me; rescue me from all who pursue me, lest someone maul me like a lion, tear my soul apart with no one to deliver.
Lord my God, if I have done this, if there is guilt on my hands, if I have maltreated someone treating me equitably–or even despoiled my oppressor without cause–then let my enemy pursue and overtake my soul, trample my life to the ground, and lay my honor in the dust.”Psalm 7:2-6
- Why did the bird and the boar blame the monkey for the missing friends?
- The animals thought the monkey was talking to himself while he prayed for help. Have you ever felt uncomfortable praying in public? Why or why not?
- How do you respond when someone accuses you of doing something that you didn’t do?
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