Friday, July 27, 2007

Boulder on the roadway

In ancient times, a king wanted to see how many people in his kingdom had the willingness to think beyond themselves for a noble cause.

So he consulted his panel of wise men, and they gave him a simple yet brilliant idea that the king at once implemented.

He had a boulder placed on a busy main roadway. Then he hid himself and watched to see who would bother to remove the huge rock.

To his surprise, some of the king's wealthiest merchants and courtiers came by and simply walked around it. Many loudly blamed the king for not keeping the roads clear, but none did anything about getting the big stone out of the way. The day passed with such complaining trespassers passing the rock sideways, and the king was deeply saddened to realize the truth as it approached dawn.

But his eyes caught another passenger that moment. He was a thin weak looking peasant coming from far carrying a load of vegetables. On approaching the boulder, the peasant paused for a moment.

He spoke to himself "I know can easily pass around this rock with my load of vegetables, but what if someone who couldn't gets stuck here? Oh no! God please help me move it", and he instinctively laid down his burden and tried to move the stone to the side of the road. At first it didn't move an inch. But he kept trying and after much pushing and straining, he finally succeeded. As the peasant was just about to turn back to his vegetables, he noticed a purse lying in the road where the boulder had been.

The purse contained many gold coins and a note from the king saying "This gold is a gift from me to the person who has the courage to remove the boulder from the roadway instead of merely whining about it". The king was smiled with content as he watched the peasant jump with joy upon getting his unexpected reward.

The peasant learned what many others never understand: every obstacle presents an opportunity to improve one's condition. Think beyond yourself, for others, and God never thinks twice about sharing his gold with you.