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A Parable of Two Frogs

A group of frogs were hopping contentedly through the
woods, going
about their froggy business, when two of them fell
into a deep pit. All
of the other frogs gathered around the pit to see what
could be done to
help their companions. When they saw how deep the pit
was, they agreed
that it was hopeless and told the two frogs in the pit
that they should
prepare themselves for their fate, because they were
as good as dead.

Unwilling to accept this terrible fate, the two frogs
began to jump
with all of their might. Some of the frogs shouted
into the pit that it
was hopeless, and that the two frogs wouldn't be in
that situation if
they had been more careful, more obedient to the
froggy rules, and more
responsible.

The other frogs continued sorrowfully shouting that
they should save
their energy and give up, since they were already as
good as dead. The
two frogs continued jumping with all their might, and
after several
hours of this, were quite weary. Finally, one of the
frogs took heed to
the calls of his fellow frogs. Exhausted, he quietly
resolved himself
to his fate, laid down at the bottom of the pit, and
died. The other
frog continued to jump as hard as he could, although
his body was
wracked with pain and he was quite exhausted.

Once again, his companions began yelling for him to
accept his fate,
stop the pain and just die. The weary frog jumped
harder and harder
and, wonder of wonders, finally leaped so high that he
sprang from the
pit.

Amazed, the other frogs celebrated his freedom and
then gathering
around him asked, "Why did you continue jumping when
we told you it was
impossible?"

The astonished frog explained to them that he was
deaf, and as he saw
their gestures and shouting, he thought they were
cheering him on. What
he had perceived as encouragement inspired him to try
harder and to
succeed against all odds.

This simple story contains a powerful lesson. The book
of Proverbs
says, "There is death and life in the power of the
tongue." Your
encouraging words can lift someone up and help them
make it through the
day. Your destructive words can cause deep wounds;
they may be the
weapons that destroy someone's desire to continue
trying -- or even
their life. Your destructive, careless word can
diminish someone in the
eyes of others, destroy their influence and have a
lasting impact on
the way others respond to them.

Be careful what you say. Speak life to (and about)
those who cross your
path. There is enormous power in words. If you have
words of kindness,
praise or encouragement -- speak them now to, and
about, others. Listen
to your heart and respond.

Someone, somewhere, is waiting for your kind and
encouraging words...

Anonymous