Looking out through my backyard window this early summer morning – sitting at my kitchen table, sipping some warmed over Starbucks coffee from my favorite Boston souvenir travel mug – I unexpectedly began to understand something about my place here.
Like the space separating the trees that were seeded long before I was born and the saplings that were planted just last week, I am permanently wedged between generations.
I’ve never been one to overestimate the importance of my brief time here. There’ll surely be no lasting consequence to anything I will ever personally accomplish no matter how well played. And nothing that I will ever fail to do will exactly influence the historical record either.
But it’s as a connector, a bridge between the old and the new, where some lasting value fully reveals itself. That space, the fertile ground we occupy between old and new, can easily sustain growth while generating new, indestructible wisdom – but only if we can first learn to absorb and synthesize whatever has come before us.
It’s not necessary that we understand all of it, or even that we derive any personal value from it. Our role is in the timing – knowing when to pass it on. Otherwise, the space we occupy is little more than some back burned ground where perplexed bystanders are content simply to stand around, ready only to snuff out every wildfire heading our way. But not every fire need be extinguished.
I believe there is much sacred ground between generations.
And that it’s our job to stand firmly within that space as we hand off humanity’s continually unfolding testimony from one occupier to the next.
Image Credit: Pixabay