fire getting started

"When you love the life you are living, you have the life you love." - Gregge Tiffen

We have a choice about how to be with the experiences that life presents. And, we have the free will to choose what we will do with them. What I’ve come to appreciate is that every experience is a learning opportunity when I’m willing to pay attention to what’s going on, what I’m doing, and how I’m doing it.

I’m discovering joy in this attention, particularly in some of my daily routines like building a fire each morning to warm my home. Through that experience each day and the preparation required I’m learning many things about wood, how to arrange kindling for a good start, and such. I’m already thinking ahead to next winter – purchasing my wood earlier so that it will be dryer, stacking it in a different place, etc.

That’s valuable learning, but it only scratches the surface. This seemingly simple daily event is teaching me much more. I’ve come to appreciate the focus, attention, and patience required to create a fire that will warm my home. Those requirements make it the perfect activity for my morning quiet time, even though I have to get up from my cozy perch and put my reading or writing on pause for a few moments.

Each morning I’m reminded that I choose how to approach the experience. I’m aware that I could choose to make it a ‘chore’ and be grumpy about how long it takes to warm the room and that my reading or writing has been interrupted. I could work up some real juice when the kindling doesn’t ignite with the first match.

And, that daily reminder strengthens my capacity to choose to love and learn from all of my life, even those events that in the moment I might prefer not to experience: an injured toe, ice melt leaking in the garage, the prospective client that chooses another coach, not receiving an expected greeting from a loved one, allowing myself to be duped into a sales presentation having been told I’d ‘won a prize’.

Those seemingly little things in life can teach us so much and remind us to “love the life we are living,” so we can “have the life we love”. In this month of love, what ‘little thing’ in life can you love this week?