Seeing Things Differently

The following is an excerpt from one of my favorite children's books, Zen Shorts by Jon J. Muth. This book was a part of our daily routine when my children were younger.

When I happened upon it recently, while decluttering the bookshelf, I read through it and was reminded how wonderful this book is and why I'll never get rid of it no matter how old my kids are. 

There was once an old farmer who had worked his crops for many years. One day, his horse ran away.
Upon hearing this, his neighbors came to visit. "Such bad luck" they said, sympathetically.
"Maybe," the farmer replied.

The next morning the horse returned, bringing with it two other wild horses.
"Such good luck!" the neighbors explained.
"Maybe," replied the farmer.

The following day, his son tried to ride one of the untamed horses, was thrown off, and broke his leg. Again, the neighbors came to offer their sympathy on his misfortune.
"Such bad luck," they said.
"Maybe," answered the farmer.

The day after that military officials came to the village to draft young men into the army to fight in a war. Seeing that the son's leg was broken, they passed him by.
"Such good luck!" cried the neighbors.
"Maybe," said the farmer.

"I get it," said Michael. "Maybe good luck and bad luck are all mixed up. You never know what will happen next."

"Yes," Stillwater agreed. "You never know."

Other thoughtful reads: The One That Got Away