A group of farmers met once a month to discuss stock, feed, rotation of crops, and all other things pertaining to farming. One farmer was always late, which irritated the other men. One day, as they were having their usual meeting, a storm suddenly arose, and they found themselves stuck in the barn, unable to leave and return to their own properties. The storm was so bad that the men believed they were about to meet their end. The worse the storm got, the more the men thought that God was punishing them for something they had done wrong, and eventually they began to think that maybe, like it was in the case of Jonah, the storm was the fault of one man.
The men decided to draw straws, and whoever drew the short straw would have to leave the barn and go out into the storm, guaranteeing his death but saving their lives. Once all straws were pulled, the man who drew the short one was exactly who everyone thought would get it — the guy who was always late. He had been a thorn in their side for a long time, and once he was gone, they believed the storm would cease and everything would return to normal.
Well, the farmer put his hat on, took one last look around, and ran out into the storm. The minute he reached his wagon, a large bolt of lightning struck the barn, killing all the farmers who thought they were safe inside.
We often think that someone else is the cause of our problems, when in fact it’s us. Do you find that no matter where you go or who you’re with, the same issues keep arising? It’s time to stop picking out others’ flaws, turn that mirror toward your own face, and address some of your issues.
It turned out that every time the farmer was late, it was because on his way to the meeting, unbeknownst to the others, he had to stop and pull one of their cows out of a ditch.
May you have the courage to address your issues with the same tenacity that you address others people’s problems. In doing so, you’ll find out you need to deal with so many of your own difficulties that you don’t have time for anything else. And may you realize it before your barn gets hit by lightning.