“When the oak is felled the whole forest echoes with its fall, but a hundred acorns are sown in silence by an unnoticed breeze.”

— Thomas Carlyle

Do you remember your graduation ceremony?  An air of celebration surrounded the day as we robed and stood in line, anxiously awaiting the signal to begin our procession into the hall where diplomas or degrees would be awarded.  The signal given, music began to play.  “Pomp and Circumstance.”  What a perfect name for the regal music that announces a major event.  Graduation is one of those times like an oak tree falling — it gets our attention with its importance and we remember the day as though it were the only event in our education worth celebrating.  It is easy to forget amid all the recognition that graduation is not only our goal, but also a celebration of the many small achievements and moments that combined to bring us to that day.

When an oak is felled, the whole forest echoes with its fall.  When we attain our goal and graduate, people notice our achievement.  We are congratulated.  There might be a party in our honor.  It is easy to forget all the tiny acorns that were sown by the wind, unnoticed, that grew to be trees.  It is easy to forget the many moments of realization that combined to bring us to a place where we could celebrate our education.

Sometimes we see the achievements of others and feel inadequate by comparison.  There are some people who are destined to do great things in a visible way.  We honor them for their achievements and sometimes we aspire to be like them.  There are others who work quietly in the background, sowing acorns in the wind and trusting that if enough of them take root, the result could be a mighty forest.

Some people will receive attention for their large achievements.  They will stand tall like trees and be visible and admired by others.  When they fall, the forest will reverberate with the weight of their success.  Others will carry small stones and place them one upon another.  Nobody will notice them quietly working; but one day those stones will pile up so high that a  mountain will stand where the land once was flat.  Never be discouraged if your work is not done to the tune of “Pomp and Circumstance.”  Never wish to be an oak if it is your destiny to sow acorns on the wind.