GREAT THOUGHTS FROM SIMPLE THINGS
A young woman went to her mother and told her about her situation and how things seemed to be getting out of control. She didn’t know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. As soon as one problem was solved, a new one developed.
Her mother kindly took her to the kitchen. She filled three small pots with water and placed each on a high heat. Soon the water in the pots came to a boil. She put fresh carrots in the first pot. She placed a couple of eggs in the second pot. She dropped a handful of coffee beans in the last pot. Then she let them sit and boil, without saying a word.
In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl.
Turning to her daughter, she asked, “Tell me what you see.” “Carrots, eggs, and coffee,” she replied.
Her mother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft. The mother then asked the daughter to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg. Finally, the mother asked the daughter to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted its rich aroma.
The daughter then asked, “What does it mean, mom?” Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity – boiling water. Each reacted differently.
The carrots went in strong, hard, and unrelenting. However, after being subjected to the boiling water, they softened and became weak.
The eggs had been fragile. Their thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior, but after sitting through the boiling water, their inside became hardened.
The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they had been in the boiling water, they had changed the water.
“Which are you?” she asked her daughter. “When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?”
Think of this: Which am I? Am I the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength?
Am I the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but becomes hardened with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a breakup, a financial hardship or some other trial, have I become hardened and stiff? Does my shell look the same, but on the inside am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and hardened heart?
Or am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor. If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you.
When the hour is the darkest and trials are their greatest, do you elevate yourself to another level? How do you handle adversity? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?
May you have enough happiness to make you sweet, enough trials to make you strong, enough sorrow to keep you humble, and enough hope to make you sure.
The happiest of people don’t necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the most of everything that comes along their way.