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The Lord guides the innocent

The devotees would often express to Sri Ramakrishna their inability to depend on God in spite of their devotion to Him. They would want to know about surrendering to God and how the Lord would protect His devotees. Sri Ramakrishna would explain the idea to them using a beautiful story. Once, a rich man had arranged a big feast and had invited a large number of guests. It was a very important occasion and everyone knew that the feast would be really grand. Hence, the turnout was quite large. The assembled guests were jostling their way to the dining tables. A small boy was watching everything absolutely unaffected with no trace of worry or anxiety. He was standing in a corner holding his father's hand. Seeing them, the owner of the house invited them and made arrangements for the small boy to sit immediately. Thus, while elders were struggling to get a place, the small boy, because he was totally depending on his father, got a seat very easily. This idea is also expressed in Bhagavad Gita when the Lord says, "teshaam nityaabhiyuktaanaam yogakshemam vahaamyaham", meaning that the Lord takes care of even the existential needs of those who are truly dependent on Him. The Bhakti lore is replete with stories of extraordinary devotees like Prahlad, Meera and others who were not only protected, but were also raised to extraordinary states of adoration and veneration by God on whom they depended completely. Weapons, poison, fire and even wild animals could not harm such great devotees of the Lord. In fact, Sri Ramakrishna says, it is safer to be allowed to be protected by the Lord than to try to protect oneself by one's own effort. He says the son holding the father's hand and walking is likely to stumble, while the child whose hand is held by the father can walk with gay abandon. Thus a true devotee is ever guided and protected.

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