On this spring day with the tinge of winter, Easter is upon us. The cream corn casserole, a staple and tradition that my grandfather started and I humbly continue to prepare for the holidays, is in the oven and filling the house with memories. Leroy lays at my feet while I watch robins cling to thin branches waving back and forth from a strong northern wind. Scattered on the mushy and brown grass are berries from the tree that birds have partially eaten and discarded. Large raven shadows race back and forth from rooftops. Beneath the blue pock-marked sky, nature plays a song, and each musician has a role.

What does this mesmerizing scene have to do with belief? I am humbled and feel privileged to be a part of this, and from that I derive peace, respect, and love. Not only for each blade of grass, each tree, each bird, but everything that plays a part. I realize that through this complex and beautiful system, we are all connected, and play our part to preserve, grow, and nurture all creatures and beings.

What you believe in, and what you derive your purpose in life, what gives you a spark to keep going through the darkest depths and the emptiest of fields, is all that matters if you are true to yourself, and have respect, peace, and love for all others.

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