Friday, May 11, 2007

A Carrot, an Egg, and the Coffee Bean

Read this, and you may never look at a cup of coffee the same way again!
A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. " I do not know how I am going to make it. I want to give up mom. I am tired of fighting and struggling, it seems as one problem was solved, a new one arises".

With something on her mind, the mother took her daughter to the kitchen. She watched as her mom filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Soon the pots came to boil.

In the first she placed carrots. In the second she placed eggs. And in the last pot she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil, without saying a word, as the daughter watched perplexed!

In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners, then asked "Tell me what you see, my child"

"Carrots, eggs, and coffee", she replied.

"Yes, but not as they were before", her words were pointing to something she tried hard to figure by herself, but couldn't.

Now the mother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. They were soft. Now she took the egg and broke it, and apparently it was hard-boiled from inside. Finally, the mother pointed towards the rich and fresh aroma coming out of coffee. The daughter couldn't help but ask "What does it mean, mother?"

She finally spoke looking in her eyes "My dear, each of these objects had faced the same adversity: boiling water. Each reacted differently. The carrot went in strong, hard, and unrelenting, but 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 inside became hardened. However, the ground coffee beans were unique--after they were in the boiling water, they had changed the water with its smell as taste!"

"Now tell me, which of these are you? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?", the wise lady asked her daughter with a suggestive smile.

And let me ask you this too, "Who are YOU?"

Are you the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity do you wilt and become soft and lose you strength?

Or are you the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Do you have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a breakup, a financial hardship or some other 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, do you elevate yourself to another level? How do you handle adversity?

The happiest of people don't necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the most of everything that comes along their way. The brightest future will always be based on a forgotten past; you can't go forward in life until you let go of your past failures and heartaches.

May we all be the coffee bean.