Jan 7, 2009

Carrots, Eggs, and Coffee - An Interesting Perspective

A friend recently sent this to me in an e-mail. I thought it presented an interesting perspective of managing life. I hope you enjoy it too.

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 breakup, a financial hardship or some other trial, have I become harden ed 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?

The happiest of people don't necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the most of everything that comes a long their way! 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.


grey like snuffie said...

Wonderful timing. I'm going to share this with a friend of mine. I think she is the coffee beans---she just doesn't realize it.

ceekay said...

Great! I am striving to be the coffee...but that hard boiled egg pops up occasionally!!

Heather said...

that's a really good story. i've never heard anything explained like that before. thanks so much for sharing!

Carolyn said...

very interesting analogy!

justabeachkat said...

I read this a long time ago, but it was so nice to have this reminder. Thanks for sharing it with us. It's a wonderful message.


(btw...I passed on the website you so sweetly shared with me about retrieving blogs that have been deleted. She was thrilled to get it. I pray it works.)

Sweetie said...

Kathy, Your post is wonderful and provides a lot of food for thought. I think that I was meant to read this today.

A Hint of Home said...

I'v heard this before and it is certainly worth hearing again. Thanks for sharing it and I want you to know I'm praying that this new trial will soon pass for you.

Pink Slippers said...


sharon said...

I love this! It is a great perspective on how we react to life's difficulties. As always God is in control and we must let go and let Him guide us. Enjoy your weekend!!!

Pam said...

This has a great message to it. Thanks!

Neabear said...

Wonderful message! That is the kind of thing we need to see/hear once in awhile. Thanks for sharing!