There was once a great Yogi who used to meditate 12 to 14 hours a day. In spite of the fact that he had achieved God-realisation he used to meditate for hours and hours. He felt this was necessary to keep the inner vessel always clean so that he could receive infinite inner wealth and offer it to the world at large. This Yogi was simplicity incarnate, purity incarnate, beauty incarnate, divinity incarnate. He was blessed with tremendous occult power and solid spiritual power.
One night, or rather, in the small hours of the morning around three o’clock, an old disciple of the yogi knocked at his door. When the Yogi opened it, he saw his disciple crying bitterly. The disciple showed the Yogi a telegram. In the telegram he read that the disciple’s only son had a heart stroke and that it was only a matter of a few hours before he would die. This son lived in a city quite distant from the city where his father and the Yogi lived, so the father was beside himself with sorrow that he would not be able to see his son again. The disciple started begging the Yogi to cure his son. “Please, please," he cried, “don’t let my son die.”
“Repeat the name of Krishna. Just say ‘Krishna, Krishna, Krishna, over and over again,” said the Yogi.
The disciple said, “Master, Krishna, will not do anything for my son. It is you who will have to do that.”
The Master replied, “If you insult my Krishna, my Guru, then your son will immediately die. You have to repeat ‘Krishna, Krishna, Krishna’. Krishna is the only medicine.”
"Krishna is the only medicine, but I have no faith in Krishna. You have all faith in Krishna Master, But I have no faith in him.”
“How is it that you do not have faith in Krishna? Krishna is my own Guru.”
“I do not have it; what can I do?”
“If you don’t have it, then right now create it. Repeat Krishna’s name and your son will be cured.”
“No, Krishna will not hear my prayer. I have done millions of things wrong, absurd, undivine and I have never prayed to him or worshipped him. Why should he listen to me now? If I call on Krishna only at the time of danger or difficulty, why should he listen to my call?”
“Krishna knows all human weaknesses. At least you are ready to call on him at the time of your difficulties. There are many who do not call on God even when they are beset with difficulties. There are many who say, ‘If you are so kind, how is it that I am in difficulty?’ Already God has proved to them that He is cruel, so they say, ‘Why should I pray to Him? I won’t pray to Him.’ But I will not accept this attitude in my disciples. If you cannot call on Krishna, then please leave my house.”
“Master, I am ready to leave your house, but first please do me a great favour.”
“What is it?”
“You cure my son. Please repeat Krishna’s name on my behalf. I will stand in front of you with folded hands.”
“All right, I agree to your proposal. Now for 15 minutes you stand in front of me and feel that your son is my concern, your son is Krishna’s concern.”
He said, “Master, I can’t believe Krishna’s concern but if you say my son is your concern I believe you.”
“If you feel that he is not Krishna’s concern then I will not be able to cure him."
“All right, I shall feel that he is Krishna’s concern. I will listen to you.”
Then the Yogi began to repeat Krishna’s name. All of a sudden there was a knock at the door. The Yogi opened the door. The servant of his disciple came in and delivered a telegram to his master. The disciple said to the Yogi, “Look Master, it is all your grace, not Krishna’s grace. You have cured my son.”
The Yogi said, “It was neither Krishna nor me who cured your son. It was your faith in me that cured him. You do not have faith in Krishna, so Krishna did not want to cure your son. I do not have the power to cure your son. It is your faith in me that cured your son.”
Then the Yogi gave some sound advice to this disciple. He said, “Even if you can’t pray and meditate regularly, do it whenever you have difficulty. At least at that time you can pray and meditate. When you pray to God when you are in difficulty, extreme difficulty, in danger, in catastrophe, if you get God’s blessing then you will feel a sense of gratitude and inner remorse that you have been neglecting God, avoiding God, ignoring God for so long. If you pray only at the time of necessity, there is no harm. God will not misunderstand you. God will not think that you are an opportunist or an insincere fellow. He will think that you are wise to come to Him for help when you are in need. If you do not come to Him at the time of necessity then feel that you are a fool. You are offering your stupidity to God for a second time. When you don’t pray to God regularly that is your first stupidity, utter stupidity. And when you are in danger or difficulty if you do not think of Him, pray to Him, meditate on Him, then you have made the same mistake a second time. The first time you are ignorant, so God will forgive you. The second time you are arrogant and God will not forgive you so easily. God will forgive you if you offer your ignorance to Him, but if you do not offer your ignorance either at the beginning or in the middle or at the end, then God will not be able to help you or save your dear ones.
It is never too late to pray to God. When you start, that is the right moment for you. When you start walking along the right path that is the right moment for you. But the sooner you start, the sooner you will reach the goal.