At the end of a long work day, an employee was leaving his factory, pushing a wheelbarrow through the gate to head home. Inside the wheelbarrow was a small box.
The security guard stopped the man and said, “What have you got in your wheelbarrow?”
“I’ve got a small box,” he said.
“I know you’ve got a small box,” the guard said. “What’s in the box?”
The worker replied, “The sawdust from the floor. At the end of the day, it gets swept up and is thrown away. I needed some, so I put it in the box, and I’m taking it home.”
The guard looked inside the box and sure enough it was filled sawdust. He sent the worker on his way.
The next day, the same thing happened.
The third day, same thing.
And the fourth day.
On the fifth day, the worker again came through with a wheelbarrow and a box of sawdust. This time the security guard said, “It’s you again with your wheelbarrow and your sawdust. I’ve got a feeling that you’re up to something. I think you’re actually stealing something. Look, why don’t you tell me what you’re stealing, and I promise I won’t report you.”
The worker said, “All right. I’m stealing wheelbarrows.”
Our lives are often a bit like that. We’re so focused on a small box of sawdust that we never notice the wheelbarrow carrying it. In other words, we can be so distracted by the little things in life that we miss the bigger picture.