Thursday, 13 February 2014

The Carrot, The Egg and the Coffee

I promise not to keep going on about recent hardships and adversity but I really do feel I need to share this thought today. Yesterday I managed to walk a number of steps without the use of my crutches. These steps were slow and not without pain, but the sense of achievement at the end was wonderful. Buoyed up by this I rested and later managed to climb the stairs and go to the toilet and back down without the crutches. Yes maybe I did do a bit too much but I wanted to try.

I saw my chair as the carrot urging me ever onward.  Then somewhere in the back of my mind I remembered something about a carrot, an egg and a coffee bean. So hear it is that story with a very meaningful message.
 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

 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 breakup, 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?

 May you have enough happiness to make you sweet, enough trials to make you strong, enough sorrow to keep you human and enough hope to make you happy.

 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.

The artwork used today is my most recent painting. Using a lot of texture. I like it because it reminds me of the runs I did daily and it is the first painting I have done for some time.


  1. glad to see you painting again Ralph! yes, you are the coffee for sure. One step at a time, right?

  2. Nice painting! It has great color and texture. I hope your painting helps with your recovery. I know it has helped me in times of stress and worry. Congratulations on taking the steps!

  3. I'm so glad to see you posting again, and hear a bit about what has been going on. Excellent job with the walking, and than so much for the story. It gave me a lot to chew on today.

  4. Lovely painting with a lovely story, thanks for sharing it because I shared it with my niece who truly needed this story, hopefully she will be the bean.

  5. An inspiring story. I am the coffee bean. Feb. 2014 was the month that my husband passed. Now, almost two years later, I am into my new life. It's not been easy after 28 years of having another part of my being gone. But with God's help I have another life started.