“Everyone knows that the lives of clouds are very active, but very short,” writes Bruno Ferrero. And that brings us to a story:
A young cloud was born in the middle of a great storm in the Mediterranean Sea. But it hardly had time to grow there; a strong wind pushed all the clouds towards Africa.
As soon as they arrived on the continent, the climate changed: a warm sun shone in the sky, and down below the golden sand of the Sahara desert spread into the distance. The wind continued to push them towards the forests in the south, since it hardly ever rains in the desert.
However, just as it is with young people, so with young clouds: this one decided to break away from its parents and older friends, to see the world.
"What are you doing?" complained the wind. "The entire desert is exactly the same! Come back to the group, and let’s go to the center of Africa, where there are beautiful mountains and trees!"
But the young cloud, a rebel by nature, did not obey; little by little, it lowered its altitude, until it was able to float on a gentle, generous breeze down near the golden sands. After wandering all over the place, it noticed that one of the dunes was smiling at it.
It was because the dune was also young, recently formed by the wind which had just passed. Straight away, the cloud fell in love with its golden hair.
"Good morning" said the cloud. "What is it like living down there?"
"I have the company of the other dunes, the sun, the wind, and the caravans which pass by from time to time. Sometimes it is very hot, but it is bearable. And what is living up there like?"
"There is also the wind and the sun, but the advantage is, I can wander across the sky and get to know everything."
"For me life is short" said the dune. "When the wind returns from the forests, I will disappear."
"And does that make you sad?"
"It gives me the impression that I am of no use to anyone."
"I feel the same way. As soon as another wind comes, I will go south and become rain; however, that’s my destiny."
The dune hesitated for a moment, before saying:
"Did you know that, down here in the desert, we call the rain Paradise?"
"I didn’t know I could become something so important" said the proud cloud.
"I’ve heard several legends told by old dunes. They say that, after the rain, we are covered in herbs and flowers. But I’d never know what that is like, for in the desert it only rains very rarely."
This time it was the cloud which hesitated. But then it started to smile joyfully:
"If you like, I can cover you with rain. Although I’ve only just arrived, I am in love with you, and would like to stay here forever."
"When I first saw you up in the sky, I too fell in love" said the dune, "but if you turn your lovely white hair into rain, you will die."
"Love never dies" said the cloud. "It transforms; and I want to show you Paradise."
And so it began to caress the dune with droplets; they remained together like this for a long time, until a rainbow appeared.
The next day, the small dune was covered in flowers. Other clouds passing towards central Africa, thought that must be part of the forest they were searching for, and poured down more rain.
Twenty years later, the dune had become an oasis, which refreshed travelers under the shade of its trees.
And all because, one day, a loving cloud hadn’t been afraid to give up its life in the name of love.
* * * * *
I need to live out all the blessings
that God has given me today.
Blessings cannot be saved
for a rainy day.
There is no bank with a safe deposit box for them.
If I do not enjoy these blessings today,
I lose them forever.
God knows that we are artists of life.
One day He gives us a chisel,
another we may receive brushes and a canvas,
and still another day He gives us a pen to write.
But we will never use a chisel on canvas,
or pens on sculptures.
Each day has its own miracle.
I must accept the blessings of today,
and create what I can with them;
if I can do this easily and without guilt,
I will receive more blessings tomorrow.
This article is a merging of shorter blogs
which were reprinted from
Paulo Coelho's website, with gratitude.
Book by this author
Warrior of the Light: A Manual
by Paulo Coelho.
About the Author
Paulo Coelho is the author of numerous books, of which the first to become a success, The Alchemist has gone on to sell more than 65 million copies, becoming one of the best-selling books in history. It has been translated into more than 70 languages, the 71st being Maltese, winning the Guinness World Record for most translated book by a living author. Since the publication of The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho has generally written one novel every two years including By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept, The Fifth Mountain, Veronika Decides to Die, The Devil and Miss Prym, Eleven Minutes, Like the Flowing River, The Valkyries and The Witch of Portobello. Visit his website at www.paulocoelho.com