LAKE CITY, CO – I was on a bike ride this evening around Lake San Cristobal with Lainey. As we rounded a bend I spotted an old adobe cabin on the hillside. Who knows how old this place is. No glass in the windows, no doors. The place is obviously old and abandoned. But running along in front of the cabin was a beautiful dry stack stone wall.
I love these walls. I’m used to seeing them in upstate New York. They are a common sight in the woods or along the backroads of Dutchess County where we used to live. Even after decades in all kinds of weather, these stone walls stand fast.
To dry stack a stone wall that will last takes a good bit of skill. A stack of stones is a lot different than a pile of stones. Generations of craftsmen have labored to perfect the technique beginning with a pile of stones and ending up with a wall that will withstand the test of time.
So, how do you build a stone wall?
One stone at a time.
It’s like putting a puzzle together. One stone at a time. Each one in its place. Each one serving its own unique purpose.
It occurred to me that we are all given a pile of stones to start with. Some of us simply do nothing with our pile of stones. We may move around a few stones here or there but there’s no rhyme or reason. No order.
It’s hard to find purpose or reason in a simple pile of rocks.
Others of us start well. We carefully select the right stone and put it in just the right place. But after a while we become distracted. Finishing the wall becomes more important to us than building the wall. We wear down. We tire. We lose our vision. What started out as a beautiful and orderly wall has become disjointed and chaotic pile of rocks. We decide not to finish well. We move on.
But there are those who stay on task. They find fulfillment in the grind of stacking one stone on the other. There is satisfaction in the long view…in finding the right stone and putting it in the right place. Then…doing it again, and again.
How do you build a stone wall that will last long after you pass from this earth?
One stone at a time.
How do you build a life that will provide an inheritance and rich legacy long after you’re gone?
One day at a time.
Each of us is given a “pile of days.” What are you doing with your pile?
What kind of life are you building?