Mother Nature gave Michigan a taste of Spring 2 weeks ago and I took advantage of the mild weather to finally clean up the back yard and flower beds. I raked mountains of leaves and collected dozens of fallen branches from the towering Maple that has seen many more years than I have.
I found my rhythm and my restless mind quieted. The whisper of the breeze and the bird calls provided peaceful music and my soul-gardening began. Cleaning, clearing, releasing.
After my fourth trip into the woods with the wheelbarrow, I built a small bonfire in the backyard fire pit. I had frustrations to burn. Anger to vent so that it didn't come spitting out around my children in words I might regret.
The fire burned hot and fast and when I finished my work (my soul-gardening), I doused the ashes with water to ensure no heat remained.
The old Maple is one of many tall trees wrapping around the expansive back yard, so the next day, I got back to work. Next Autumn, I thought, I'll do a much better job than I did last year. I'm learning; it's been decades since I lived here.
With only a few loads to go, I decided just to drop the leaves into the lifeless fire pit for the next time. I stood, relaxed from exertion, reflecting on a job well-done. Suddenly, I saw smoke. Beneath day old ash and debris, heat remained. Burning embers that looked cold, but weren't. Within minutes there were flames.
Our Passions are like this... Life covers us with layers, hiding our fire. Some of us can barely remember what once made us come alive. We think that nothing lights us up anymore. That we're cold, disconnected, just getting through each day.
Just like my pile of leaves, the fire in your heart can burn bright again. Anyone's can. The hot embers are still there, ready for fresh tinder and a breath of air to alight them.
What would it take for you to feel alive again? For your embers to turn to flames? Reach for it. Wake up! Live.