I was talking to my cousin Jill today. Yes, chatting on the phone. Really hearing each other’s voices, laughter, and intonations! No texting, no Facebooking, not even an email…a real live phone conversation, what a concept. Okay, I’m off my soapbox now. She called to see how I was doing as the surgery date nears. She commented on my positive attitude and said it reminded her of a story she recently told her son. She said I reminded her of this donkey. Jill, are you calling me an A$$? Seriously, this simple fable is truly powerful. I asked her to email it to (yes, we did fall back on modern technology) and I wanted to share it with you here. Be the donkey!
One day a farmer’s donkey fell down into a well. The animal cried piteously for hours as the farmer tried to figure out what to do. Finally, he decided the animal was old, and the well needed to be covered up anyway; it just wasn’t worth it to retrieve the donkey.
He invited all his neighbors to come over and help him. They all grabbed a shovel and began to shovel dirt into the well. At first, the donkey realized what was happening and cried horribly. Then, to everyone’s amazement, he quieted down.
A few shovel loads later, the farmer finally looked down the well. He was astonished at what he saw. With each shovel of dirt that hit his back, the donkey was doing something amazing. He would shake it off and take a step up.
As the farmer’s neighbors continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and take a step up. Pretty soon, everyone was amazed as the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well and happily trotted off!
Life is going to shovel dirt on you, all kinds of dirt. The trick to getting out of the well is to shake it off and take a step up. Each of our troubles is a steppingstone. We can get out of the deepest wells just by not stopping, never giving up! Shake it off and take a step up.