|Which One Are You?
A young woman went to her mother and told her about
her life and how things were so hard for her. She did
not know how she was going to make it and wanted to
give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It
seemed as one problem was solved, a new one arose.
Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled
three pots with water and placed each on a high
fire. Soon the pots came to boil. She placed
carrots in the first pot, eggs in the second,
and ground coffee beans in the third. She
let them sit and boil; without saying a word.
After about 20 minutes she turned off the burners.
She fished the carrots out and put them into a bowl.
She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl.
Then she ladled some coffee out into a bowl.
Turning to her daughter, she said, "Now
tell me what you see." "Carrots, eggs,
and coffee," the daughter 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, Mother?"
Her mother explained that each of these
objects had faced the same adversity:
boiling water, but each reacted differently.
The carrot went in strong, hard, and unrelenting.
However, after being subjected to the boiling
water, it softened and became weak.
The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer
shell had protected its liquid interior, but
after sitting through the boiling water,
its insides became hardened.
The ground coffee beans were unique,
however. After they were 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 like the carrot, the egg or the coffee bean?
Are you the carrot that seems strong,
but wilts under pain and adversity,
becoming soft and loosing your strength?
Are you the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but
changes with the heat? Did you have a fluid spirit, but
after some trial, have you become hardened and stiff?
Does your shell look the same, but on the inside you are
bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and hardened heart?
Or are you 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,
you elevate yourself to another level.