When we cleared the land for our home, we removed only those trees necessary to make room for the edifice
. Even this was quite a few trees and, in our haste to be on with our task, we cut them in movable lengths
and piled them away from the action, awaiting a period
when we had time to saw them into fireplace lengths.
They lay there for years. Each time we looked at the pile, we said to ourselves, "We should saw those logs up so we can use them." The pile, however, was formidable. Actually two piles shoulder height, as high as we could lift them when we put them there, leered at us and overwhelmed us completely. We always turned to a task we could accomplish.
Then one winter, when my youngest son was born, and I needed some exercise to get my figure back, I made a New Year's resolution to saw two logs into usable lengths each day. I fashioned a crude saw horse, which my husband had to revise for me, and purchased a bow saw, a one man affair.
Each day I worked, wrestling with the cold, the task of moving the heavy logs into position and, most of all, the struggle to keep the logs from binding the saw as I worked. I scarcely noticed the size of the log piles because I was so involved in my task. I enjoyed the exercise, and my figure did improve.
Along about the middle of February I happened to be looking out at the log pile while I was having a second cup of coffee. Much to my amazement, I realized the log piles were almost gone, replaced by neat stacks of firewood!
This was a lesson I never forgot. How many tasks seem too great when we look at the whole job! When I had stacks of papers to grade, I put them in piles of ten and did one pile each day. We move by inches, not miles, through life, and almost anything can be accomplished if we look an inch ahead. Life's best lessons come from log piles - moments of insight when we see for ourselves a significant truth. My summer was rich with these interludes, and they will be important when the harvest comes.