“Suffering had merely tempered his heart…”

The sun cast its radiant glow over the blue water lapping against the sandstone walls. A lone man selling sea sponges on a boat gently bobbed in the water. From early morning to late afternoon, he would ply his trade. Despite rarely selling his wares, he was blessed with a radiant smile full of joy. I was drawn to this man with whom I struck up a friendship. Our talks revealed a life born of fortitude amidst adversity, yet filled with joy and amazing warmth. Suffering had merely tempered his heart, and in this man I sensed a deep sense of humility and serenity despite hardship. Never before had I experienced such hospitality. One day, in silent awe I looked at this man with love and said “God bless you in all things, and may you always find refuge in Him”. He responded with a sad but warm smile of conviction. “And that’s the greatest gift that one can ever wish for in life”

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