Do you know what your gift to the world is?  Your purpose?  I believe each of us has a gift that when realized will have profound implications that will ripple out into our families, communities, nation, the world.  You may be wondering how you find your gift. I have found that telling a story helps to illustrate concepts and provide points to ponder.  Each reader will take away their own version of the story and apply it to his/her life in a different way.  The story below was told to me during a Shamanic journey, and I hope it helps to guide and inspire you.

Long ago, in an ancient Indian tribe there was a teenager named CeCe.  CeCe was a lonely girl, as there were no other children in the tribe her age.  She spent much of her time alone.  One day, one of the Elders came to CeCe and asked her to take a deerskin container through the woods to the waterfall, fill it with the water, and bring it back.  CeCe asked who would go with her, and the Elder replied she was to go alone–there was no one who could be pulled from their duties to go with her.  CeCe figured she was used to being alone, and she guessed this trip would be no different.  She took the container and set off into the woods.

She had limited daylight to get through the woods to the waterfall, so she kept her pace quick.  But then she came upon a fork in the path.  She was trying to figure out which way to take when she dropped the container.  She stooped down to pick it up and there was a glimpse of a white rock.  She swept the leaves off and on the rock was an arrow pointing to the right.  Odd, she thought.  But she decided to take the right side and set off in that direction.

The sun was a little lower in the sky, and the woods were becoming darker.  Up ahead on the path, among all the dark trees, she spotted a tree with a silvery bark.  She was perplexed at why this one tree would be growing among the rest.  She stopped to touch the tree, and noticed another arrow–this time pointing up.  She looked up and saw some of the lower branches were snapped off.  She decided to snap off a branch and use it as a walking stick.  And back she went on the trail.

The light continued to drop in the forest, but just a few steps in front of her she could see beams of sunlight coming through the trees illuminating a bush with bright pink flowers.  She bent over to smell the flowers and saw 2 flint rocks laying on the ground.  She recognized them because the elders used them to light fires for cooking.  She banged the 2 rocks together and sure enough, sparks flew.  She had an idea.  She took the walking stick, banged the stones together and now she had a torch.  She could light the way to the end of the forest so she could retrieve the water.

She walked for quite some time before she heard the roaring of the waterfall.  It was very dark now.  She emerged from the forest and could tell she was quite close to the water, but the torch only lit a small circle around her.  It was then that a swarm of fireflies surrounded her and led her to the water.  She bent over the water to fill the container, and saw not only her own reflection, but the faces of all the tribes-people who came before her reflected in the water.  She felt an immediate and overwhelming sense of belonging.  She also realized that the rock, tree and flowers were signs put in place by those that preceded her.  She wanted to leave a sign for the next person to make the journey.  She called on the spirit of Firefly, and asked if they would lead the way out of the forest to the waters’ edge for anyone that came after her.  The spirit said they would, and she thanked them. 

She picked up her torch and full container of water and made her way back into the woods.  She passed the flowers, the tree, and the rock, then she emerged out of the woods just as day was breaking.  She took the container to the Elder.  The Elder asked her if she knew why they needed the water.  CeCe replied she did not.  The Elder pointed at a woman fanning herself under a tree.  “Do you see that woman?  She is with child.  Our people believe the water from that waterfall keep the mother and child healthy.”  CeCe smiled.

So what is the moral of my story?  In your loneliest days, in your darkest nights, you will be tasked with a journey.  And on that journey you will discover 2 things – your purpose and your tribe.  When you emerge into the light, you will have a gift.  And that gift will not only sustain your generation, but the generations to come.



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