Friday, March 30, 2012

Trading Marbles

A man at the checkout line in a neighborhood grocery store watched as the store owner talked to a little boy.  The boy was admiring some fresh ripe tomatoes.  The store owner asked if the wanted to buy some.  The boy told him that he didn't have the money.  "What you got to trade for it?" the man asked.  Just this blue marble.  The man said "You know I prefer red. Take the tomatoes and when you come back bring me a red marble."  The boy smiled as he left with the tomatoes.  The store owner's wife told the man watching how her husband help out two other boys who just don't have much.  She said they always come back with a marble but it is never the right color."  Years later the store owner dies and many people came to show their respects, including the man in the store that day.  He noticed three well dressed young men hug the man's widow and then lean over into the casket.  When it was the man's turn to speak to the widow, he reminded her of the day they met and the boy with the marble.  She smiled and told the man that those were the three boys. "They came to settle their debt." she told him.  He looked into the casket and between the man's folded thumbs and fingers were three of the shiniest red marbles he had ever seen. Moral: Life is not measured by the breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath.

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