InspirEmail No 49 - December 6, 2004
'Inspirational messages to refresh the spirit and boost the emotional bank account'

A Bigger Frying Pan

Two men went fishing. One man was an experienced fisherman, the other wasn't. Every time the experienced fisherman caught a big fish, he put it in his ice chest to keep it fresh. Whenever the inexperienced fisherman caught a big fish, he threw it back.

The experienced fisherman watched this go on all day and finally got tired of seeing this man waste good fish. 'Why do you keep throwing back all the big fish you catch?' he asked. The inexperienced fisherman replied, 'I only have a small frying pan.'

Sometimes, like that fisherman, we throw back the big plans, big dreams, big jobs, big opportunities that come our way. Our faith is too small. We laugh at that fisherman who didn't figure out that all he needed was a bigger frying pan; yet how ready are we to increase the size of our faith?

Whether it's a problem or a possibility, you will never face anything bigger than you can handle. That means we can confidently walk into anything that comes our way. OK - that's one way to view the story, go for the big stuff! As I said above - I feel that there is an equally important message in this story .... Little fish are sweet!!!

Sometimes the big fish will elude us - they just mightn't be around. The big opportunities often take extra time and circumstances before they manifest in our lives. That's when we should be aware (and grateful) that there are little fish to catch - and often we have to 'cast a different net' in order to catch them!

Also - after a long spell of eating humble fish-pie - catching something bigger will bring a thrill with it that has been worth the wait!

Regardless of the size of what you catch - it's the doing the fishing that counts - tirelessly, patiently, with persistence - you'll get there!

Moral of the story: Have two frying pans ..... Be ready for what life hands you!

With my sincere thanks to Phil Evans for sending me this great story

Gifts From the Heart

According to legend, a young man while roaming the desert came across a spring of delicious crystal-clear water. The water was so sweet he filled his leather canteen so he could bring some back to a tribal elder who had been his teacher. After a four-day journey he presented the water to the old man who took a deep drink, smiled warmly and thanked his student lavishly for the sweet water. The young man returned to his village with a happy heart.

Later, the teacher let another student taste the water. He spat it out, saying it was awful. It apparently had become stale because of the old leather container. The student challenged his teacher: 'Master, the water was foul. Why did you pretend to like it?'

The teacher replied, 'You only tasted the water. I tasted the gift. The water was simply the container for an act of loving-kindness and nothing could be sweeter. Heartfelt gifts deserve the return gift of gratitude.'

I think we understand this lesson best when we receive innocent gifts of love from young children. Whether it's a ceramic tray or a macaroni bracelet, the natural and proper response is appreciation and expressed thankfulness because we love the idea within the gift.

Gratitude doesn't always come naturally. Unfortunately, most children and many adults value only the thing given rather than the feeling embodied in it. We should remind ourselves and teach our children about the beauty and purity of feelings and expressions of gratitude.

After all, gifts from the heart are really gifts of the heart.

Written by Michael Josephson 

- An Inspirational Thought -

'We all need positive messages in our life . . . so give 'A Gift of Inspiration' to those who are important to you'
Keith Ready

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A monthly positive inspirational story and quote to refresh your spirit and boost the emotional bank account. InspirEmail was first published in November 2005 and each issue can be viewed in the Archived InspirEmail Directory located below the latest issue of InspirEmail

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