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The Parable of the Rose

A certain man planted a rose and watered it faithfully.
Before it blossomed, he examined it.
He saw a bud that would soon blossom.
He also saw the thorns, and he thought,
"How can any beautiful flower come from a plant,
burdened with so many sharp thorns?"
Saddened by this thought, he neglected to water the rose,
and before it was ready to bloom, it died.
So it is with many people.
Within every soul, there is a rose.
The "God-like" qualities planted in us at birth,
growing amidst the thorns of our faults.
Many of us look at ourselves and see only 
the thorns, the defects.
We despair, thinking nothing good
can possibly come from us.
We neglect to water the good within us,
and eventually it dies.
We never realize our potential.
Some don't see the rose within themselves.
It takes someone else to show it to them.
          One of the greatest gifts a person can possess
 is to be able to reach past the thorns
and find the rose within others.
This is the truest, most innocent, and gracious
characteristic of love ~
to know another person, including their faults,
recognize the nobility in their soul,
and yet, still help another to realize
they can overcome their faults.
If we show them the rose, they will conquer the thorns.
Only then will they blossom many times over,
Our duty in this world is to help others,
by showing them their roses and not their thorns.
It is then that we achieve the love we should feel for each other.
Only then can we bloom in our own garden.

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