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GOD CAN NEVER DIE_安徒生童话全集



IT was a Sunday morning.The sun shone brightly and warmly into the room, as the air, mild and refreshing, flowed through the open window. And out under God'sblue heaven, where fields and meadows were covered with greens and flowers, all the little birds rejoiced. While joy and contentment were everywhere outside, in the house lived sorrow and misery. Even the wife, who otherwise always was in good spirits, sat that morning at the breakfasttable with a downcast expression; finally she arose,withouthaving touched a bite of her food, dried her eyes, andwalked toward the door.

It really seemed as if there were a curse hanging over this house. The cost of living was high, the food supply low;taxes had become heavier and heavier;year after year the household belongings had depreciated more and more, and now at last there was nothing to look forward to but poverty and misery. For a long time all this had depressedthe husband, who always had been a bard-working andlaw-abiding citizen;now the thought of the future filledhim with despair; yes, many times he even threatened to end his miserable and hopeless existence.Neither the com- forting words of his good-humored wife nor the worldly or spiritual counsel of his friends had helped him; these had only made him more silent and sorrowful. It is easy to un- derstand that his poor wife finally should lose her courage,too.However,there was quite another reason for her sad- ness, which we soon shall hear.

When the husband saw that his wife also grieved and wanted to leave the room,he stopped her and said,"I won't let you go until you have told me what is wrong with you!"

After a moment of silence, she sighed and said, "Oh, my dear husband,I dreamed last night that God was dead,and that all the angels followed Him to His grave!"

"How can you believe or think such foolish stuff!"answered the husband."You know,of course,that Godcan never die!"

The good wife's face sparkled with happiness,andas she affectionately squeezed both her husband's hands,she exclaimed,"Then our dear God is still alive!"

"Why, of course," said the husband." How couldyou ever doubt it!"

Then she embraced him, and looked at him with loving eyes,ex- pressing confidence, peace, and happiness, as she said," But, my dear husband, if God is still alive, why do we not believe and trust in Him! He has counted every hair on our heads;not a single one is lost without His knowledge.

He clothes the lilies in the field;He feeds the sparrows and the ravens."

It was as if a veil lifted from his eyes and as if a heavy load fell from his heart when she spoke these words. He smiled for the first time in a longwhile, and thanked his dear, pious wife for the trick shehad played on him,through which she had revied his belief in God and restored his trust. And in the room thesun shone even more friendly on the happy people's faces; a gentle breeze caressed their smiling cheeks, andthe birds sang even louder their heartfelt thanks to God.

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