The Story of the Two frogs
Along the Firebreak
It is amazing how somebody you meet , often just by chance , can have an astounding effect on the future actions of your life. Today the world is thinking of David Bowie , his music, his life and of course his fairly early death. People who may or may not have told him during his life are recounting the effect he had upon them.
I began thinking of the people who over the years had a dramatic effect on my life. There are many who encouraged me with a word and others with an action. Those who saw in me something I had not seen in myself. This is not the place to go into those moments or to name those people but they all hold a treasured place in my life.
Have you ever walked a forest trail? Tree after tree, tap reaching for the light. Blocking the light to everything underneath. Then you come to a fire break. Here the wild flowers and plants have space to grow. Here you can often catch sight of the vista the trees have been blocking out. You feel uplifted and encouraged.
It is moments like these that often come to us in life with an encouraging word from another. Like so many with an artistic or creative mind I suffer those moments of block and deep despair. The years have brought an understanding of those moments and how often they are the precursors to times of great creativity. That understanding has never come easily, and I am grateful for those who have encouraged me with little words and actions that to them might have seemed small.
This brings me to todays story, my apologies that it has taken so long to get there.
A group of frogs were travelling through the woods, and two of them fell into a deep pit. When the other frogs saw how deep the pit was, they told the two frogs that they were as good as dead.The two frogs ignored the comments and tried to jump out of the pit with all the strength they could muster.The other frogs shouted even harder that they were as good as dead and should just accept their fate.At last one of the frogs paid heed to what the other frogs were saying and exhausted he gave up. He fell down and soon he died.
The other frog continued to jump as hard as he could. Once again the crowd of frogs told him to accept his fate and to give up. He jumped even harder. He gathered up all of his remaining strength made one last jump and made it out. When he got out the other frogs said, "Did you not hear us?" The frog explained to them that he was deaf. he thought they were encouraging him the entire time.
This story teaches us two lessons:
1. There is power of life and death in the tongue. An encouraging word to someone who is down can lift them up and help them through the day, and help them towards a new tomorrow..
2. A destructive word to someone already down can be what it takes to finish them off. Be careful of what you say at all times. Speak life to those who cross your path, be their firebreak. The power of words... it is sometimes hard to understand that an encouraging word can go such a long way. Anyone can speak words that rob another of spirit, the spirit to continue in difficult times.
Special is the person who will take time to encourage another.
Todays painting is still with me. I almost gave up when friends and family told me it was terrible and they did not like it. Others in their diet way encouraged me to that is did contain some lovely passages and that it was a stepping stone to better paintings. I have kept it as a reminder. Not all the art we produce will be liked by others.