At the end of the school year, Shaya brought home a fragile bean seedling in a little plastic cup. The stem was half-broken, and the message not optimistic. Surely, this plant would find its way to the garbage heap before long.

But we replanted it from the cup into the border garden on our patio. The little tender roots clutched onto the new dirt and we watered it mercilessly, with rain and from the hose, hoping for rebirth.

That was two months ago. Last night, we lifted the long vines and wide leaves and little yellow buds to find: beans. At least three, almost ready to eat, and many more sprouting.

That’s what a little love can do. Take something nearly-dead and for which no one has any hope and bring it back to life. Nurture it until it blossoms and blooms and overtakes the planter that at first was so enormous.

We’ve had more rain than hot sun this summer, and the plants have a lot to show for it. Our backyard is vigorously green in early August, when it’s typical for Michigan yards to start turning brown.

Plants have stretched as high as they can to their fullness. We have color everywhere we turn. The only downside: our tomatoes are taking so long to ripen. They crave the heat.

Our abundantly rainy summer tells me that we are facing a huge thirst. We need to quell that with cool water, with coolness, with magic falling from the skies.

What are we thirsty for? Authenticity. Happiness. Contentment.

Look around you. The entire world is yearning for something more than the mundane. Everywhere you look, people are asking for meaning, no longer satisfied with the status quo.

And so it rains. It pours in peels of drops, shining sheets of wet towering down from the clouds.

As for me, I’m looking for quiet. Space. Answers. I’m looking for things to make sense again, and the people around me to be like-minded and full of love.

In the work that we do every day and the paths we walk, let’s look for the hidden meaning, the tiny surprises, the beautiful miracles. The baby frog, the owl in the tree, the bats that slid into the wooden house Shaya put up for them in early June.

Let’s find many opportunities to gather with the right people around a roaring evening fire, roasting marshmallows and talking about what really matters. Let’s hug everyone, and hold the hug, so that it seeps into our pores and carries us on our day like a shield holding us tight.

Let’s lay down the gauntlet of hatred and take up the sword of peace. All from a bean – we can know what is possible only when we stop clouding the view.

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