A daughter complained to her father about 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 struggling. It seemed that as soon as one
problem was solved, a new one arose.
Her father, a chef, took her to the kitchen. He filled three pots with
water and placed each on a high fire. Soon the pots came to a boil. In
one he placed carrots, in the second he placed eggs, and the last he
placed ground coffee beans. He let them sit and boil, without saying a
The daughter sucked her teeth and impatiently waited, wondering what he
was doing. In about twenty minutes he turned off the burners. He fished
the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. He pulled the eggs out and
placed them a bowl. Then he ladled the coffee out and placed it in a
bowl. Turning to her he asked. "What do you see?"
"Carrots, eggs, and coffee," she replied.
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. She smiled as she tasted its
She said, "What's the point?"
He explained that each of the items had faced the same adversity -
boiling water - but each reacted differently.
The carrot went in strong and hard. But 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?" he asked his daughter. "When adversity knocks on your
door, how do you respond? Do you become weak, like a carrot, hard on the
inside, like an egg, or do you change the circumstances, like the coffee beans?"
A Professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front
of him. When the class began, wordlessly, he picked up a very large and
empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then
asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.
So the Professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the
jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas
between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was
full. They agreed it was.
The Professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of
course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar
was full. The students responded with an unanimous "Yes."
The Professor then produced two cans of beer from under the table and
poured the entire contents into the jar, effectively filling the empty
space between the sand. The students laughed.
"Now," said the Professor, as the laughter subsided, "I want you to
recognize that this jar represents your life.
The golf balls are the important things - your family, your children, your
health, your friends, your favorite passions - things that if everything
else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full.
The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house,
your car. The sand is everything else - the small stuff."
"If you put the sand into the jar first", he continued, "there is no room
for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life. If you spend all
your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the
things that are important to you. Pay attention to the things that are
critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take time to get
medical checkups. Take your partner out to dinner. Play another 18. There
will always be time to clean the house, and fix the disposal. Take care of
the golf balls first, the things that really matter. Set your priorities.
The rest is just sand."
When he had finished, there was a profound silence. Then one of the
students raised her hand and with a puzzled expression, inquired what the
The Professor smiled. "I'm glad you asked. It just goes to show you that no
matter how full your life may seem, there's always room for a couple of
This beautiful picture is from http://valhalrion.deviantart.com/art/A-Story-of-Two-Wolves-Design-181572843
A Cherokee elder sitting with his grandchildren told them, "In every
life there is a terrible fight - a fight between two wolves.
One is evil: he is fear, anger, envy, greed, arrogance, self-pity, resentment,
The other is good: joy, serenity, humility, confidence,
generosity, truth, gentleness, and compassion."
A child asked,
"Grandfather, which wolf will win?" The elder looked him in the eye.
"The one you feed."
An old man lived alone in a village. He wanted to spade his potato garden, but it was very hard work. His only son, who would have helped him, was in prison.
The old man wrote a letter to his son and mentioned his situation:
I am feeling pretty bad because it looks like I won’t be able to plant my potato garden this year. I hate to miss doing the garden, because your mother always loved planting time. I’m just getting too old to be digging up a garden plot. If you were here, all my troubles would be over. I know you would dig the plot for me, if you weren’t in prison.
Shortly, the old man received this telegram: ‘For Heaven’s sake, Dad, don’t dig up the garden!! That’s where I buried the GUNS!!’ At 4 a.m. the next morning, a dozen FBI agents and local police officers showed up and dug up the entire garden without finding any guns.
Confused, the old man wrote another note to his son telling him what happened, and asked him what to do next.
His son’s reply was: ‘Go ahead and plant your potatoes, Dad.. It’s the best I could do for you from here.’
NO MATTER WHERE YOU ARE IN THE WORLD, IF YOU HAVE DECIDED TO DO SOMETHING DEEP FROM YOUR HEART YOU CAN DO IT. IT IS THE THOUGHT THAT MATTERS.. NOT WHERE YOU ARE OR WHERE THE PERSON IS….
This story was written by Kristi Powers
My father was not a sentimental man. I don't remember him ever "ooohhing" or "ahhing" over something I made as a child. Don't get me wrong; I knew that my dad loved me, but getting all mushy-eyed was not his thing. I learned that he showed me love in other ways.
There was one particular time in my life when this became real to me...
I always believed that my parents had a good marriage, but just before I, the youngest of four children, turned sixteen, my belief was sorely tested. My father, who used to share in the chores around the house, gradually started becoming despondent. From the time he came home from his job at the factory to the time he went to bed, he hardly spoke a word to my mom or us kids. The strain on my mom and dad's relationship was very evident. However, I was not prepared for the day that Mom sat my siblings and me down and told us that Dad had decided to leave. All that I could think of was that I was going to become a product of a divorced family. It was something I never thought possible, and it grieved me greatly. I kept telling myself that it wasn't going to happen, and I went totally numb when I knew my dad was really leaving.
The night before he left, I stayed up in my room for a long time. I prayed and I cried -- and I wrote a long letter to my Dad. I told him how much I loved him and how much I would miss him. I told him that I was praying for him and wanted him to know that, no matter what, Jesus and I loved him. I told him that I would always and forever be his Krissie...his Noodles. As I folded my note, I stuck in a picture of me with a saying I had always heard. "Anyone can be a father, but it takes someone special to be a daddy."
Early the next morning, as my Dad left our house, I sneaked out to the car and slipped my letter into one of his bags.
Two weeks went by with hardly a word from my father. Then, one afternoon, I came home from school to find my mom sitting at the dining room table waiting to talk to me. I could see in her eyes that she had been crying. She told me that Dad had been there and that they had talked for a long time. They decided that there were things that the both of them could and would change -- and that their marriage was worth saving. Mom then turned her focus to my eyes -- "Kristi, Dad told me that you wrote him a letter. Can I ask what you wrote to him?" I found it hard to share with my mom what I had written from my heart to my dad. I mumbled a few words and shrugged. Mom said, "Well, Dad said that when he read your letter, it made him cry. It meant a lot to him and I have hardly ever seen your dad cry. After he read your letter, he called to ask if he could come over to talk. Whatever you said really made a difference to your dad."
A few days later my dad was back, this time to stay. We never talked about the letter, my dad and I. I guess I always figured that it was something that was a secret between us.
My parents went on to be married a total of thirty-six years before my dad's early death at the age of fifty-three cut short their lives together. In the last sixteen years of my parent's marriage I, and all those who knew my mom and dad, witnessed one of the truly "great" marriages. Their love grew stronger every day, and my heart swelled with pride as I saw them grow closer together...
When Mom and Dad received the news from the doctor that his heart was deteriorating rapidly, they took it hand in hand, side by side, all the way.
After Dad's death, we had the most unpleasant task of going through his things. I have never liked this task and opted to run errands so I did not have to be there while most of the things were divided and boxed up. When I got back from my errand, my brother said "Kristi, Mom said to give this to you. She said you would know what it meant." As I looked down into his outstretched hand, it was then that I knew the impact of my letter that day so long ago. In my brother's hand was my picture that I had given my dad that day. My unsentimental dad, who never let his emotions get the best of him, my dad, who almost never outwardly showed his love for me, had kept the one thing that meant so much to him and me. I sat down and the tears began to flow, tears that I thought had dried up from the grief of his death, but that had now found new life as I realized what I had meant to him. Mom told me that Dad kept both the picture and that letter his whole life. I have a box in my home that I call the "Dad box". In it are so many things that remind me of my dad. I pull that picture out every once in a while and remember. I remember a promise that was made many years ago between a young man and his bride on their wedding day, and I remember the unspoken promise that was made between a father and his daughter...
A promise kept.