I woke up this morning to the signs of a hard frost over night. The roof tops are covered with a white crystal substance that started to glitter as the sun rose higher in the sky. The hills in the distance have a frosty looking haze hanging over them, and I can see chimneys all up and down the block sprouting smoke, the signs of the warmth inside all of the homes.
As I sit here to write this, my squirrel friends across the way (whom I have named Mr. Gus and Mrs. Gus) are poking their heads out of their rooftop homes tentatively, testing the air and checking for the locations of any of the neighborhood cats that like to take a stroll around the property every day. This day it would seem that the cold is keeping them closer to home and warm beds. Finally, as if he has decided to simply take the plunge, Mr. Gus takes off over the roof top to the huge pine tree beside it, and the chestnut trees behind the house as well. Cold or no cold, rain, snow, sleet or hail, just like the mailman, Gus and all of his squirrel friends go out and bring home the bacon ... or the nuts, if you get my meaning. This is true of the blue jay family that also lives in the neighborhood (very noisy folks, a bit on the hyper side but very devoted to each other), the crows from down the road, and every other member of the animal kingdom; they all get up, do what needs to be done, and come home to roost or nest when the day is done. They do not worry whether the sun will come up again in the morning. They know it will. You can call it instinct if you want. I like to call it faith.
Each and every day, no matter what is going on in my life, good or bad, I know that the sun will rise again, a new day will present itself, and I have the opportunity to make of it what I want. Sure, some days may be cloudy, grey, even downright miserable, but behind all of that the sun still shines, the world still turns, and the day continues to move from moment to moment. It's not just a lifetime of experience that tells me that, it is my faith that tells me that as well. In that respect, Mother Nature has been my greatest teacher, faithfully moving the seasons one after the other, the sowing, growing and dying back. If we can have faith in a world that continues to work with or without us, what amazing things can we accomplish if we cooperate with it instead of fight against it?
If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you can say to that mountain, "move," and it will move.
Book of Matthew
Mr. Gus has just returned, scampering quickly over the frozen roof top, a huge chestnut in his mouth. He stops for a moment, scanning the area for signs of trouble, then moves quickly into his home, bringing the little woman her breakfast. He will come out again later, perhaps joined by his lovely partner, and they will go in search of goodies to store up for the winter. Just as surely as the sun will rise tomorrow, I know I will see them again. As the saying goes, "I have a mustard seed, and I'm not afraid to use it!"
And so it is.