THINGS I LEARNED FROM LEAVES
and everything around you is your teacher.
fall season is wrapping up, coming to a close.
I am spending a lot of time outside raking leaves, putting them in bags,
lugging them to the curb on trash day. The
air is crisp and smells clean. These
repetitive chores give me ample time for thought and reflection.
Now, as this time is ending, I wish to share with you the lessons I have
learned from the leaves.
everyone I know who lives in a house is grumbling and groaning about the
dropping leaves. They complain
about the extra work, the raking and bagging that is done one day, only needing
to be repeated the next. I donít
grumble or rumble on. The leaves
give me gratitude. Gratitude for
the privilege of having a tree of my own to tend.
When I was young and living poor, I never imagined that I would have a
house or yard or a tree of my own.
son tries to reason with me that we should just wait until all the leaves fall
before we begin the cleanup. He is
of the opinion that we should not waste the effort raking when more will fall
and we will have to start the process all over.
But I know from experience that this method is not for me.
I prefer to work at the cleanup on a regular basis. It
means less time spent at each session. It
also means that I can look out after the job and see a orderly yard instead of
decaying leaves. The leaves have
illustrated the choices we have in addressing problems.
I can let my troubles build up, fill my life with mess and disarray, and
then try to tackle them all at once. I
know that then they will seem insurmountable.
I will have to labor so long and hard at one stretch that thereís a
chance that I will become depressed and believe things are hopeless.
As I look out at the landscape of my life, I will see chaos and feel
fear. Or I can clean them up as
they come, putting my life in order, giving myself a refreshing respite before
the next problem blows in.
leaves have taught me that change can be beautiful and that endings are also
beginnings. I look around in the
fall and see the striking colors that splash the foliage.
The air becomes more alive and the smells are pungent with the season.
I know by these signals that summer has ended, which I will miss, but I
can look forward to the birth of the new seasons and the delights that they will
bring. Our lives are made up of constant change.
There will be periods of our lives that we will sorely miss, but we must
have courage to look with anticipation to the new beginnings that come with each
purpose in life can be likened to the leaves.
We are here for a season, glorious and each unique, to provide comfort
and protection through our love to those around us, just as the leaves give
shade and coolness to refresh us. We
must fulfill our purpose here on earth before our season passes.
are supple, moist and pliant when attached to the life-giving tree.
When shed, they become dead, brittle shadows of themselves.
As too are our emotions. When
we remain close to the spiritual core of our true selves, we are lively and
giving. We can bend gracefully with
the winds of our lives. When
separated from this core, we die spiritually.
We become rigid, harsh and unloving.
most important lesson of all is this. Although
starts at building a fresh life or new attitude can be as fragile as the small
green bud that emerges from the tree limbs in spring, they can also be just as
tenacious. Though storms of
disapproval or obstacles may try to force the demise of our budding changes, we
can and will persevere, as do these delicate shoots of life.
I take these lessons presented to me with reverence. All things can be guideposts to living life in a more sustaining way if we are willing to perceive with a keen eye and an open, willing mind. Look around yourself and discover the lessons that are awaiting your heart.
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