The Lord's Grace

 General Stories of God's Grace 

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Potatoes, Eggs and Coffee Beans
19 Apr 2001

     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 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?

     (Matthew 5:1-16 NIV)  "Now when he saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down.  His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them, saying:
     Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
     Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
     Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
     Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
     Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
     Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
     Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.
     Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
     Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.
     Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.  You are the salt of the earth.  But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again?  It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men.  You are the light of the world.  A city on a hill cannot be hidden.  Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl.  Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house."

Author Unknown

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