A group of friends and I met at a local retreat center. That morning, we shared our joys and sorrows. As I listened, I wondered how we might accept our burdens and move along with them rather than get stuck in them. It is after all so easy to get stuck. I knew these burdens wouldn’t disappear, but could they become lighter somehow in our acceptance of them?
It was late fall in Madison Wisconsin, and the trees had shed their leaves and accepted the coming cold with strength and beauty. As I thought about the trees’ acceptance of winter, I began to accept my own personal burdens. I still grieved those burdens, but I no longer fought against them. And by accepting them, I began to live with them and move along.
Earlier during the next fall, I noticed how the leaves changed color in a vibrant celebration of life. Winter was coming, and all the trees could do was dance in an explosion of yellows, oranges, and reds. The trees showed me not only how to accept winter but also how to embrace it. Imagine embracing your burdens. It’s possible, and ironically, it leads to freedom.