April 22, 2020 –

Embedded in difficulties can be lessons of great future value.

Tom Haggai, Chairman of IGA, likes to tell an old Norwegian folktale about a terrible day in the life of a hardworking fisherman and his two sons. Every day they would work long hours, casting off early in the morning and returning home well after dark.

One day their catch was especially good. But by mid-afternoon, a sudden storm blackened the sky and obscured the dangerous shoreline.

As the three fishermen were approaching the rocky coast, tragedy struck at home. A spark from the kitchen stove caught on a log. A flame erupted, and soon their log cabin was ablaze. All the family’s possessions were consumed.

When they reached shore, the fisherman’s wife was waiting at the dock to tell them the news.

“Karl,” she wept, “fire has destroyed our home. We have nothing left.”

The husband seemed little perturbed by the news. “Karl, didn’t you hear me? Our cabin is gone. Our possessions are ashes!” “Oh, I heard you,” Karl replied. “We’ve lost everything. But I have something to tell you, too. This evening, the boys and I were shrouded in mist and fog and perilously close to smashing our boat on the rocks.

“Then, a miracle happened. Through the storm, I spotted a dim yellow light. The dim light grew brighter and brighter. I knew it came from the harbor. We turned the boat toward the light and safety.

“The same blaze that destroyed our home was the light that saved our lives.”