Starting the Fire


October 18, 2010...

When I was growing up, one of my jobs was to build the evening fire. I learned to space two larger pieces of wood on each side of the fireplace grate, and in between these two pieces of wood, I would loosely crumple up old newspaper. On top of the paper, I would add smaller pieces of splintered kindling. I would then light the paper with a match.

As I watched and listened to the kindling start to burn and crackle, I would add smaller pieces of wood to the middle. The kindling, now burning steadily, would pass its flame on to these new and larger pieces, and before long, everything would be burning uniformly. The kindling would eventually burn down, but the stacked pieces of wood in the middle would now be carrying the fire's strength. Throughout the night, new pieces of wood would be added, and the fire of one log continued to be passed on to the new log.

Interesting lesson I learned back then.

When one person is passionate about an idea, his or her fire is passed on to another. The more people this "on fire!" person touches, the greater the energy and the greater the possibility for something big to ignite. Like my early fireplace fires.

One log to another. One person to another.

People have the ability to ignite each other. We each have the ability to inspire, empower and motivate those we know...and those we don't know. Our fire is passed on and good things start to happen. Instead of warming up rooms...we grow projects, create possibility, and generate smiles.

Cause and effect lessons exist all around us. And when we train our mind to see these lessons, we can use them to serve as kndling to keep "lighting" ourselves.


By Shawn Anderson

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Shawn Anderson                                                 (310) 402-4826