The Gift of Suffering

A talented young man left home to seek out his fortune.  Before leaving, his wise old grandfather gave him a gift.  When the young man looked inside the wrapped package he pushed it away and left.

As he traveled in pursuit of his dreams, he realized that something was missing from his life and wondered about the gift.  So he went back home to discover the unwrapped box waiting for him.

When he tried to pick it up, he realized it was too heavy and needed to ask a friend to help him carry the weighted box.  The two were able to place it on their shoulders and slowly walk out into the world.

Before long, they could be seen working together balancing the box and asking others to help them with their heavy load. As each new person was added, the load became lighter and life began to take on new meaning.

One day, a beautiful woman spotted the young man and his friends and asked if she could help carry the box. The young man looked at her with love in his eyes and joyfully agreed.

Life was good until one day the box got stuck in a crevice and wouldn’t come out. The young man tried with all his might to retrieve the box but it wouldn’t budge.

He refused the help of his friends and slowly they left him alone with the stuck box and his feelings of failure. When the woman approached him, he turned towards the box and she reluctantly walked away.

For many days, you could see the young man, with tears in his eyes, trying to pull the box from the crevice.

As if his grandfather knew he would come to this place in the road, he appeared by his side.  The young man asked his grandfather why this was happening to him. The wise old man turned to him with compassion and stated,  “ Our sufferings are a gift that we are given to share with others. If we try and carry them by ourselves, we will never see the hidden treasures of this life.”

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