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I found the following while I was searching for some inspiration today.  We all need inspiration, but inspiration is especially important when we are facing difficulties in our lives.  I happen to be going through some rough patches in my life right now, and I found the story very uplifting.  I hope it will be the same for you:

I took my text from a little book called The Missing Piece by Shel Silverstein, which I can describe only as a fairly tale for adults.  It tells the story of a circle that was missing a piece.  A large triangular wedge had been cut out of it.  The circle wanted to be whole with nothing missing, so it went around looking for its missing piece.  But because it was incomplete and therefore could roll only very slowly, it admired the flowers along the way.  It chatted with worms.  It enjoyed the sunshine.  It found lots of different pieces, but none of them fit.  So it left them all by the side of the road and kept on searching.

Then one day the circle found a piece that fit perfectly.  It was so happy.  Now it could be whole, with nothing missing.  It incorporated the missing piece into itself and began to roll.  Now that it was a perfect circle, it could roll very fast, too fast to notice the flowers or talk to the worms.  When it realized how different the world seemed when it rolled so quickly, it stopped, left its found piece by the side of the road and rolled slowly away.

The lesson of the story, I suggested, was that in some strange sense we are more whole when we are missing something.  The man who has everything is in some ways a poor man.  He will never know what it feels like to yearn, to hope, to nourish his soul with the dream of something better.  He will never know the experience of having someone who loves him give him something he has always wanted and never had.

There is a wholeness about the person who has come to terms with his limitations, who has been brave enough to let go of his unrealistic dreams and not feel like a failure for doing so.

Source:  Kushner, Harold S.  “You Don’t Have to be Perfect.”  Reader’s Digest May 1997: 167-68.

August 2008