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Friday, May 6, 2011

The Bag of Marbles

A man had been particularly down on his luck. The lottery ticket he had bought did not win. The employer he worked for had laid him off. The traffic had slowed him down and made him late for an interview. The get rich quick scheme he had bought into left him broke. He was walking along the beach one evening wallowing in his poor luck when his bare foot struck something. He reached down and picked up a bag of marbles. Just my luck, he thought.

He opened the bag and took one out. He had an idea. He looked at the marble and he said to him self, “Each one of these marbles represents one of the bad things that have happened to me. I am going to state one of my troubles with each marble and through my troubles into the sea. Then, maybe my life will turn around.”

With that, he took the first marble. He said, “Here is for the lottery ticket that did not win.” Then, he threw the marble as far as he could. “That felt good,” he said as he took out the second marble. “Here is for the employer that laid me off. “That felt really good,” he said as he grabbed the next one. This went on for the better part of an hour. In the beginning, the marbles went pretty fast. As he was getting to the bottom of the bag, he really had to think. He had two marbles left. He grabbed one of them and said, “Here is for all of the good choices I am going to make going forward in my life. He threw that marble as hard as he had ever thrown anything in his life. As he heard in plunk in the water, he decided to keep the last marble as a memory of this night. He had not felt so good in a long time. He had thrown all of his troubles into the sea and he was ready for a new beginning. He put the marble in his pocket and went home.

At home, his wife noticed a difference in him right away. She asked what happened. He smiled and took the marble out of his pocket and showed it to her. He was going to tell her how he threw all of his troubles into the sea and he was ready for a fresh start. Before he could say a word, she said, “What a beautiful Pearl. Where did you get it?”

He looked at his hand. He was, in fact, holding an absolutely beautiful pearl. A pearl that would change their lives. He sold the pearl and paid all of their debt and did get that new beginning. From time to time he thought about that walk along the beach. His old self would have been full of self pity for all the pearls he threw away. His new self knew that it was the best walk he had ever taken.

Morals of the story:
Moral 1. What looks like a bag of marbles may be a bag of pearls. Your contact list is your bag of pearls. Each pearl in the bag represents one of the people or businesses that make up that list. If you think they are a marble, you will treat them as a marble and discard them. If you see them as a pearl, they may see it too. Finally, it only takes one pearl to get your dreams rolling. Imagine what will happen when you see each of pearls for what they really are.

Moral 2. When you let go of your troubles good things will happen to you. So often, we get caught up in the negatives of life. And, we let these negatives control our life. 'The economy is so bad I think I will wait to make that call.' Or, 'People really don't have the money, so I don't want to bother them.' Here is the truth.
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Until the value is understood, any expense or inconvenience is too much. Once the value is known, no expense nor inconvenience with stop them.

If you have what people need, they will work with you. Focus on the positives and let go of your troubles.
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Moral 3. The most important lesson of all is, when you bring home a pearl to mamma, she will be happy. And, when mamma is happy, everybody is happy.
It is not what is in the bag that is important. It is how you view what is in the bag that makes a difference.