Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Wheatberry refers to the entire kernel of whea...
Wheatberry refers to the entire kernel of wheat except for the hull (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I was talking with my best friend yesterday, and as we discussed things going on in his life, he said, “I know there’s a rock and a hard place, and I’m right in between them.”

It came to me in a flash, and I said, “When wheat berries are between a rock and hard place, they become flour.  You can’t do a whole lot with wheat berries, but you can do a whole lot with flour.”

He shot back, “But it’s a painful process.”

Five years ago, I wrote about how soap becomes, so we also become.  In talking to Bobby, I remembered this.  Gentle oils get brutalized chemically to create lovely, skin-nourishing soaps.  At the same time, the lye itself loses part of its core chemical identity (its highly basic pH) in the presence of the oils.  The reaction produces heat – a significant amount of it.  It’s a vicious process.

Being between a rock and a hard place is also vicious and, as Bobby said, painful.  It’s a change, and once we make that change, allow our circumstances to change us, we then have the potential to be transformed into something new and even more useful.  Once we make that change, though, we can never go back to the way we were.  My soaps can never go back to being water, oils, lye and fragrances, just like flour cannot become wheat berries ever again.

In summary, life happens, sometimes good, sometimes bad.  These life events often change us, and we can choose for ourselves if we’re going to use our new selves to be useful and good, or if we’re just going to whine and complain that we’ll never again be the way we once were.

What changes have happened to you in your life?  How did those changes make you a better person?

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