‘Life is Like A Box of Chocolates’

I love that moment when I unwrap a box of chocolates. Picking away at the frustratingly sticky cellophane, until I find an edge to tear it properly open. There’s that whiff of chocolate as the sleeve peels off and I ease the lid up with a creak of cardboard. Then a final pop as the box opens and a menu card flutters free. Oh the menu! Such a brilliant idea, without a menu I could end up eating a coconut cream or orange fondant by mistake…

Perusing the menu reveals a foretaste of choice; each tantalising description helping to choose my favourite, but which favourite will it be? Then that last barrier between me and chocolate heaven – a sheet of the thinnest paper, patterned and translucent to peel and reveal the delights of a whole new box of dark, beautiful chocolates to munch and savour. Grown up, decadent, decorated, discreet and very, very delicious.

Can we just take a moment to relish the moment….because this level of chocolate luxury doesn’t actually happen very often, not in my house. My chocolate ‘fixes’ are usually much simpler, a chocolate button or two filched from the pack set aside for grandchildren.  

Ok so you might not even like chocolate! Apparently some perfectly lovely and sane people in our world don’t? Moreover, there are those very unfortunate people can’t eat chocolate for really understandable dietary reasons; gosh, you do have my utmost sympathy.

But bear with me on the chocolate front for I owe the explanation;  a nod of affirmation to Mrs Gump – Forrest’s mum from the Hollywood movie ‘Forrest Gump’.  Forrest Gump’s response to life was based on his mother’s wisdom, and it is she who has cornered the market on this basic Truth, ‘ life is like a box of chocolates – you never know what’s going to happen next.’

We, like Forrest have to take things one at a time. One chocolate at a time…One day at a time. And in the process there will be those inevitable moments,  the curveballs in life when what we though was coming our way was anything but anticipated. That moment of shock when the Praline Truffle turns out to be a Strawberry Cream, or a Mocha Mouthful turns out to be a Hazelnut Whirl – which is not fine if you have a nut allergy.

Life is like a box of chocolates and we never do know what happens next. Ask anyone sitting in the A and E department of the local hospital, or the Consultant’s waiting room to receive test results; or any political journalist, on-call Firefighter or parent of an angry teenager.

So thanks to Mrs Gump’s gumption, we’re reminded that what happens today is sometimes what we plan and hoped for, but other times turns out to be  the equivalent of a mangled strawberry cream.

But isn’t that the wonder of life, not actually knowing exactly what’s next? Making the most of the moment because we can’t take tomorrow for granted? I know it is sometimes tempting to want to look ahead,  but I reckon God was right to urge us to be content with living today, allowing tomorrow to unfold naturally. Trusting that whatever happens, he’ll be with us in the joys, sorrows, frustrations. In the toffees and truffles, in the mangled  melted mess of the unexpected and unwanted.

This wondrous box of life is ours to relish, with bite sized moments of every variety, different experiences and choices to chew over one mouthful at a time, To enjoy,  to learn  and grow from, and yes even to weep over until the box of chocolates is finished. Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what happens next.

Unless you’re God and that’s OK because he’s the Master Chocolatier

(c) Franbellina
Life is like a box of chocolates…

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