He was born in Italy but came to the United States as a young man. He studied juggling and became famous throughout the whole world.
Finally he decided to retire. He longed to return to his home country and settle down. He took all his worldly possessions, booked a passage on a ship to Italy and invested all the rest of the money in a single diamond. He hid the diamond in his stateroom.
While aboard ship, he was showing a boy how he could juggle a bunch of apples. Soon a crowd had gathered. The pride of the moment went to his head. He ran to his stateroom and got the diamond. He explained to the crowd that it represented his entire life’s savings. He started juggling the diamond. Soon he was taking more and more chances.
At one point he threw the diamond high into the air and the crowd gasped. Knowing what the diamond meant, they begged him not to do it again. Moved by the excitement of the moment, he threw the diamond even higher. Again the crowd gasped and then sighed in relief when he caught the diamond.
Having total confidence in himself and his ability, the juggler told the crowd he would throw it up one more time. This time it would be so high that it would be out of sight for a moment. Again, they begged him not to do it.
But with the confidence of all his years of experience, he threw the diamond high into the air. It actually did disappear for a moment. Then the diamond returned into view sparkling in the sunlight. At that moment, the ship lurched and the diamond dropped into the sea and was lost forever.
We all feel terrible about the man’s loss of all his worldly possessions. But God compares our soul as more valuable than the possessions of the whole world.
Just like the man in the story, some of us are juggling with our souls. We trust in ourselves and our own ability and the fact that we have gotten by before. Oftentimes there are people around us begging us to stop taking the risk because they recognize the value of our soul.
But we continue to juggle one more time…never knowing when the ship will lurch and we will have lost our chance forever.