Allan and Andrew were friends from neighbouring villages. They used to meet almost every week to catch up on what’s happening in their lives. Allan was blind, so usually it was Andrew who used to visit Allan.
But one time Allan decided to visit his friend Andrew. They spent the whole day together and when it was night, Allan wanted to leave, but Andrew insisted that he stays back that night at his home as it is not safe to travel when it is dark. But Allan was sure that he wanted to go.
So Andrew lit a lamp as he said goodbye to him. Allan refused to take the lamp saying it would not be of any help to him and said, “I don’t need this lamp, dear; I will use my stick to find my way. Nights and days are similar to me.”
To this, Andrew said, “Keep it with you. It is not for you, but for others. If you carry this lighted lamp with you, others can see that someone is approaching and that will at least make sure that they will not collide with you.” Allan saw merit in this and finally took the lamp from his friend.
They finally bade goodbye to each other and Allan started his journey carrying the lit lamp with him. On the way, there was a storm. He waited under a tree and resumed his journey after the storm.
Suddenly a stranger coming in the opposite direction collided with him and both of them fell down on the ground. Allan was very angry and shouted angrily, “Couldn’t you see the lamp in my hand, man? Are you blind?” The stranger replied, “I am not blind, but your lamp was not burning.”
Allan soon realised that the lamp blew off during the storm. So, he politely apologised to the man and soon they began to talk. As they got talking they realised that they were headed to the same destination but in different paths. The stranger offered that they could walk together so that they get home safe. Allan was more than happy, and they proceeded home.
Allan’s story ended on a positive note as the stranger helped him to get home safe but imagine if things had gone wrong. While the lamp was a great tool, it could not save the collision.
Knowledge and ability are tools, not things to be shown off: Knowledge, skill and experience are powerful tools to help you learn and do things better. They help you better when you use them to improve the way you do things rather than use them to show others how smart you are.
Have the right tools and you will find work: Every job well done is the sum total of the right doer and the right tools. Hands are the tool of the painter, the artist. Arm yourself with the right tools and work will find you.
When we shape our tools well, they shape our future better: Tools give you the power to do your job more efficiently, but remember tools are tools. How you use them, determines how they assist you. If you use them well, they help you improve your productivity, but if you use them wrongly they can destroy you.