A certain daughter complained to her father about her life and how things have been so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and she wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed that just as one problem was solved another arose.
Her father, a chef, took her to the kitchen, filled three pots with water and placed the fire on high. Soon the three pots came to a boil.
In one he placed carrots, in the other he placed eggs, and the last he placed ground coffee beans. He let them sit and boil, without saying a word.
The daughter sucked her teeth and impatiently wondered what he was trying to do. She had problems, and he was making this strange concoction. In half an hour he walked over to the stove and turned down the fire. He pulled the carrots out and placed them in the bowl. He pulled the eggs out and placed them in the bowl. Then he ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl.
Turning to her he asked. “Darling what do you see?
“Smartly, she replied. “Carrots, eggs, and coffee.
He brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft.
He then asked her to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg.
Finally, he asked her to sip the coffee. Her face frowned from the strength of the coffee.
Humbly, she asked. “What does it mean Father?”
He explained. “Each of them faced the same adversity, 212 degrees of boiling water. However each reacted differently.
The carrot went in strong, hard, and unrelenting. But after going through boiling water, it softened and became weak.
The egg was fragile. A thin outer shell protected a liquid center. But after sitting through the boiling water, it’s inside became hardened.
The coffee beans are unique however. After they were in the boiling water, it became stronger and richer.
Which are you, he asked his daughter? When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?
- Are you the carrot that seems hard, but with the smallest amount of pain, adversity, or heat you wilt and become soft with no strength.
- Are you the egg, which starts off with a malleable heart? A fluid spirit. But after a death, a divorce, an accident you became hardened and stiff. Your shell looks the same, but you are so bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and heart, internally.
- Or are you like the coffee bean? The bean does not get its peak flavor and robust until it reaches 212 degrees Fahrenheit. When the water gets the hottest, it just tastes better.
When things are there worst, you get better. When people talk the most, your praises increase. When the hour is the darkest, trials are there greatest, your worship elevates to another level.
How do you handle adversity?
Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?
Another simplified version 异曲同工:
Put three pots of water over the fire.
In the first pot, put some carrots.
In the second pot, put some eggs.
In the third pot, put some coffee beans that have been grounded into coffee powder.
Boil all three pots for 15 minutes.
The carrots went in hard. They are now soft.
The eggs went in soft inside Now they are hard inside.
The coffee powder has disappeared.
But the water has the colour and the wonderful smell of coffee.
Now think about life.
Life is not always easy.
Life is not always comfortable.
Sometimes life is very hard.
Things don’t happen like we wish.
People don’t treat us like we hope.
We work very hard but get few results.
What happens when we face difficulties?
Now think about the pots.
The boiling water is like the problems of life.
We can be like the carrots. We go intough and strong. We come out soft and weak. We get very tired. We lose hope. We give up.There is no more fighting spirit.
Don’t be like the carrots!
We can be like the eggs.
We start with a soft and sensitive heart.
We end up very hard and unfeeling inside.
We hate others.
We don’t like ourselves.
We become hard-hearted.
There is no warm feeling, only bitterness.
Don’t be like the eggs!
We can be like the coffee beans.
The water does not change the coffee powder.
The coffee powder changes the water!
The water has become different because of the coffee powder.
The hotter the water, the better the taste.
We can be like the coffee beans.
We make something good from the difficulties we face.
We learn new things.
We have new knowledge, new skills, new abilities.
We grow in experience.
We make the world around us better.
To succeed, we must try… and try again.
We must believe in what we are doing.
We must not give up.
We must be patient.
We must keep pushing.
Problems and difficulties give us the chance to become stronger… and better… and tougher.
What are we like when things do not go well?
Are we like the carrot…or the egg…or the coffee bean?
Be like the coffee bean!