Monday, September 26, 2011

PostHeaderIcon Cara: Putting out fires...with Carrots, Eggs and Coffee

I recently moaned to told someone how I feel like all I do lately is put out "fires". Whether I have my mom, PTA or friend hat on, seems like when one issue is solved another one pops up and it's getting real old. Cranky moment? Maybe. (Never have those? Great, then give me some of whatever you're having.) Then I got this email from my mom that I thought was worth sharing....

Carrots, Eggs & Coffee

A carrot, an egg, and a cup of coffee....You will 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. 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. In the first she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs, and in the last she placed ground coffee beans.. 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, mother?'

Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity: boiling water. 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 inside 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 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 changes with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a big arguament, 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?

I'm shooting for coffee bean. Been feeling like an egg lately. (the carrot thing ain't NEVER gonna happen) Think I will make myself another cup now. Cheers!

Jenn's two cents:  I needed that this morning as I sat here feeling sorry for myself.  My children are challenging me, my house a mess and I am was feeling a bit like that carrot - soft and mushy and not really wanting to take anyone or anything on. I would like to be the coffee bean (even though I hate coffee!) - I would rather change the water than merely swim through it.  A great thought for the day.

2 comments:

Rosanne said...

Love this. I really needed this today, have been feeling much more like carrots lately. Must be time for coffee.

Cara and Jenn said...

To my Honey:

You are a DIAMOND that only shines brighter when put in hot water.

Love Ya
ME

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