“Be believing, be happy, don’t get discouraged. Things will work out.”
- Gordon B. Hinckley
“How many times have you tried to talk to someone about something that matters to you, tried to get them to see it the way you do? And how many of those times have ended with you feeling bitter, resenting them for making you feel like your pain doesn’t have any substance after all?
Like when you’ve split up with someone or lost someone so dear to you, and you try to communicate the way you feel, because you need to say the words, need to feel that somebody understands just how pissed off and frightened you feel. The problem is, they never do. “Plenty more fish in the sea,” they’ll say, or “You’re better off without them,” or “don’t worry about them, screw them”. They never really understand, because they haven’t been there, every day, every hour. They don’t know the way things have been, the way that it’s made you, the way it has structured your world. They don’t understand the history, the background; don’t know the pillars of memory that hold you up. Ultimately, they don’t know you well enough, and they never can. Everyone’s alone in their world, because everybody’s life is different. We are so focused on our own selfish lives not to actually reach out to others and be the one who has an understanding and a forgiving heart, one who looks for the best in people. We all are trying to make our lives easier, but you have to do the hard work first. We all have a choice. The question is: are you willing to do the hard work?”
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Once upon a time a daughter complained to her father that her life was miserable and that she didn’t know how she was going to make it. She was tired of fighting and struggling all the time. It seemed just as one problem was solved, another one soon followed.
Her father, a chef, took her to the kitchen. He filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Once the three pots began to boil, he placed potatoes in one pot, eggs in the second pot, and ground coffee beans in the third pot.
He then let them sit and boil, without saying a word to his daughter. The daughter, moaned and impatiently waited, wondering what he was doing.
After twenty minutes he turned off the burners. He took the potatoes out of the pot and placed them in a bowl. He pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl.
He then ladled the coffee out and placed it in a cup. Turning to her he asked. “Daughter, what do you see?”
“Potatoes, eggs, and coffee,” she hastily replied.
“Look closer,” he said, “and touch the potatoes.” 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. Its rich aroma brought a smile to her face.
“Father, what does this mean?” she asked.
He then explained that the potatoes, the eggs and coffee beans had each faced the same adversity– the boiling water.
However, each one reacted differently.
The potato went in strong, hard, and unrelenting, but in boiling water, it became soft and weak.
The egg was fragile, with the thin outer shell protecting its liquid interior until it was put in the boiling water. Then the inside of the egg became hard.
However, the ground coffee beans were unique. After they were exposed to the boiling water, they changed the water and created something new.
“Which are you,” he asked his daughter. “When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a potato, an egg, or a coffee bean? “
In life, things happen around us, things happen to us, but the only thing that truly matters is what happens within us.
Which one are you?
You must know the reason why she is silent.
You must trace her weakest spots.
You must write to her.
You must remind her that you are there.
You must know how long it takes for her to give up.
You must be there to hold her when she is about to.
You must love her because many have tried and failed. And she wants to know that she is worthy to be loved, that she is worthy to be kept.
And, this is how you keep her.”
- Junot Díaz, This Is How You Lose Her
Has God called you out to what is seemingly an impossible situation?
“Your grace abounds in deepest waters
Your sovereign hand
Will be my guide
Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me
You’ve never failed and you won’t start now
So I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine.”
Emily is not your typical 3 year old. She decided to cut her hair and give it to kids with cancer who have lost their hair.