There was a man who had four sons. He wanted his sons to learn not to judge things too quickly. So he sent them each on a quest, in turn, to go and look at a pear tree that was a great distance away.

The first son went in the winter, the second in the spring, the third in summer, and the youngest son in the fall.

When they had all gone and come back, he called them together to describe what they had seen.

The first son said that the tree was ugly, bent, and twisted.

The second son said "No, it was covered with green buds and full of promise".

The third son disagreed; he said "It was laden with blossoms that smelled so sweet and looked so beautiful, it was the most graceful thing he had ever seen".

The last son disagreed with all of them; he said "It was ripe and drooping with fruit, full of life and fulfillment".

The man then explained to his sons that they were all right, because they had each seen but only one season in the tree's life.
He told them that you cannot judge a tree, or a person, by only one season, and that the essence of who they are and the pleasure, joy, and love that come from that life can only be measured at the end, when all the seasons are up.

If you give up when it's winter, you will miss the promise of your spring, the beauty of your summer, fulfillment of your fall.

Moral:

Don't let the pain of one season destroy the joy of all the rest.
Don't judge life by one difficult season. Persevere through the difficult patches and better times are sure to come some time or later.

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On Judging Others

Created on 27 January 2011
Contributed By Brian Cavanaugh

A brother committed a fault. A council was called to which Abba Moses was invited, but he refused to attend. Then the superior sent someone to say to him, "Come, for everyone is waiting for you."

So Abba Moses got up and went. He took a leaking jug, filled it with water, and carried it with him.

The others came out to meet him and asked, "What is this, father?"

The old man said to them, "My sins run out behind me, and I do not see them, and today I am coming to judge the error of another."

When they heard this they said no more to the brother but forgave him instantly.
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