A fable is told of a rabbit, a mouse and a chicken who all took up residence together. They worked out a very good plan wherein all of them shared the workload. The rabbit cooked the meals, the chicken brought in the firewood and the mouse brought in the water from a nearby brook. They were all very happy.

One day as the hen was going into the woods to collect the wood, she was approached by a busybody crow. He inquired as to what she was doing. Upon hearing her responsibilities he began to tell her how the rabbit and the mouse were taking advantage of her by doing the easier work.

She just could not rid her mind of this discussion. On her way home she grew angrier thinking how she was being abused by her roommates. She made up her mind to do something about it, too.

Once inside she started complaining about her workload. “It is not fair that I always have to do the hardest work. Why don’t we switch things up?” Well, the other two also then decided that they were doing the hardest work and that a change would indeed be the best solution.

As discontentment will do, it had spread from the chicken to the others. Now they were about to change their lifestyle with which they had been very satisfied. The rabbit would gather the firewood while the mouse cooked and the hen brought the water.

The rabbit hopped into the woods to get the firewood. A fox saw him go in and followed turn. By and by he caught him and ate him. The chicken took the pail to the brook and dipped it into the water. The current however, was too strong for her and it pulled her under. The mouse sat at home on the edge of the pot of stew that he had made and waited for the others. Suddenly he lost his balance and fell into it.

It all began as discontentment with life. It ended with all of them losing their lives. It is not really surprising what complaining does to the complainers. There is really nothing good about those who complain all of the time or who allow just complaints to get the best of them. Complaining will destroy you if you are not extra careful.

Mike Johnson
via Richmond, KY
Bulletin Digest (October 1998)

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