Last Sunday I went to the church and as a part of the special Harvest Festival service the Reverend told us a story which I want to share with you in my own words.
The story points out that some problems may be too hard to overcome by one person, but it also teaches us that when we join our forces together, every one of us will only have to deal with a much smaller part of a challenge.
It also shows that often people need a leader and a common goal or belief to unite them.
It reminds us that when people unite together, life challenges become much easier and more probable to overcome.
An old and wise traveller who has been walking all day since dawn, saw a small village in a distance. He was very hungry and tired and became overjoyed to see the village. He thought he will ask villagers for some food and overnight shelter.
He started running towards the village and suddenly he tripped over a stone which was half burried in the middle of the road.
The traveller digged the stone out so that no one else trips over it. When he looked at the stone he liked its shape and decided to take it. He put it in his pocket and set off towards the village.
When he arrived at the village he approached the first house and asked for some food. The lady of the house said that she doesn't have enough food to feed her own family over the winter and she cannot share anything with him. She was sad and she shut her door in front of the traveller.
He approached the second house and again he was told that they don't have enough food to survive winter and they cannot offer him a meal.
The traveller went to the next house, and then another one, and another, and in every house he was told that there is not enough food to survive winter.
He was saddened by this and was wondering how the poor villagers are going to live trough the coming winter.
Finally he sat in the middle of the village and started a little fire to keep himself warm. The villagers soon joined him and also sat around the fire and everyone felt nice and warm. Everyone however was very hungry.
The traveller brought out of his pocket a stone he found earlier on and said that he could cook a delicious stone soup for everyone, but he just needs a big pot and some water.
The villagers became very excited about a nice, hot meal and someone quickly brought a massive pot. They filled it up with water and the traveller placed his stone inside the pot and hung it over the fire.
When the water started boiling the traveller took a spoon and tried the soup. He said that it tastes delicious, but it could have been better if there was some garnish added to improve the flavour. One of the villages run to his house and quickly brought a big bunch of carrots and some parsnip and onions as well. Another villiger came back with two big cabbages and some kids brought couple of potatoes. The traveller chopped all the vegetables into small pieces and placed everything in the pot. Then he tasted the soup again.
It tasted wonderfully, but he said, it could have been better if there was a bit of meat added. Quickly one of the richer villagers brought a big piece of meat and it was placed in the pot.
The traveller tried the soup again and said that although it tastes beautifully it still needs a little bit of flavour to reach its full potential. Quickly an old lady brought some herbs and seasoning and a delicious smell came from the pot. The traveller tried the soup once again and announced that it is ready.
A delicious and nourishing pot of soup was enjoyed by all. After the meal the traveller and villagers started dancing around the pot, singing and having a wonderful time together. Everyone was happy.
Next morning the traveller thanked villagers for a lovely evening and set off to continue his journey. He left his stone for them and said that whenever they feel hungry and sad they can use the stone and cook a big pot of stone soup to be enjoyed by all.
Villagers were cooking stone soup throughout the winter and no one was ever hungry again, there was always enough soup for all. They also became united and enjoyed sharing and spending time together.