It is curious that our own offenses should seem so much less heinous than that of others. I suppose the reason is that we know all the circumstances that have occasioned them and so manage to excuse in ourselves what we cannot excuse in others. We turn our attention away from our own defects, and when we are forced by untoward events to consider them, find it easy to condone them. For all I know we are right to do this; they are part of us and we must accept the good and bad in ourselves together.
But when we come to judge others, it is not by ourselves as we really are that we judge hem, but by an image that we have formed of ourselves from which we have left out everything that offends our vanity or would discredit us in the eyes of the world. To take a trivial stance: how scornful we are when we catch someone out telling a lie; but who can say that he has ever told not one, but a hundred?
There is not much to choose between men. They are all a hotchpotch of greatness and littleness, of virtue and vice, of nobility and baseness. Some have more strength of character, or more opportunity, and so in one direction or another give their instincts freer play, but potentially they are the same. For my part, I do not think I am any better or any worse than most people, but I know that if I set down every action in my life and every thought that has crossed my mind, the world would consider me a monster of depravity. The knowledge that these reveries are common to all men should inspire one with tolerance to oneself as well as to others. It is well also if they enable us to look upon our fellows, even the most eminent and respectable, with humor, and if they lead us to take ourselves not too seriously.
A daughter complained to her father about her life and how things were so hard for her, She did not know she was going to make it and want to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed as one problem was solved a new one arose.
Her father, a cook, 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 in the last he placed ground coffee beans. He led them sit and boil, without saying a word.
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 mug. Turning to her he asked," Darling, 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 . Then he 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 rich aroma.
What does it mean, Father? she humbly asked.
He explained that each of them had faced the same adversity, boiling water, but each reacted differently. The carrot went in strong, hard, and unrelenting. But after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. The egg had being 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? he asked his daughter.
When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?
The significant inscription found on an old key "If I rest, I rust" would be an excellent motto for those who are afflicted with the slightest taint of idleness. Even the most industrious might adopt it with advantage to serve as a reminder that, if one allows his faculties to rest, like the iron in the unused key, they will soon show signs of rust and, ultimately, cannot do the work required of them.
Those who would attain the heights reached and kept by great men must keep their faculties polished by constant use, so that they may unlock the doors of knowledge, the gate that guard the entrances to the professions, to science, art, literature, agriculture --- every department of human endeavor.
Industry keeps bright the key that opens the treasury of achievement. If Hugh Miller, after toiling all day in a quarry, had devoted his evenings to rest and recreation, he would never have become a famous geologist. The celebrated mathematician, Edmund Stone, would never have published a mathematical dictionary, never have found the key to science of mathematics, if he had given his spare moments to idleness. Had the little Scotch lad, Ferguson, allowed the busy brain to go to sleep while he tended sheep on the hillside instead of calculating the position of the stars by a string of beads, he would never have become a famous astronomer
Labor vanquishes all --- not inconstant, spasmodic, or ill-directed labor, but faithful, unremitting, daily effort toward a well-directed purpose. Just as truly as eternal vigilance is the price of liberty, so is eternal industry the price of noble and enduring success.