the tree

May 26, 2010 § Leave a comment

The most memorable part was sitting on a bench underneath a tree, shaded from the rays of a blazing hot afternoon sun.

If I had merely walked by, I would have only seen the tree. But this time I paid more attention, determined to treat the tree I had chosen as a fellow citizen in the kingdom of God.

Now that my being was in peaceful stillness, I as able to appreciate how my fellow citizen was abuzz with life. Ants, butterflies, birds, and an occassional bushy-tailed squirrel clamboring up the branches and then setting ‘flight’ seemingly without care, into another tree close by.

Yet, this tree rustling with so much life had seen its fair share of losses. Strewn around it were leaves that had fallen. Some leaves on the tree were half brown, awaiting that fateful day when they too would join their brothers on the ground. The wind brings to my shoulder a dried up flower, which one easily can imagine was blooming with pride a while ago. Ah the process of renewal, part and parcel of all living things! Picking up the flower, I faintly glimpse the poignant necessity of renewal for me, a human being. I have so often resisted it. Yet would I rather be a rock, immune from it all?

Why am I afraid? There is death in the process of renewal. Yet, there is also life. Green leaves will take the place of the fallen ones. Flowers will bloom once again. I stare too much at the fallen leaves, the dried up flowers…to notice the the tree is, despite it’s losses, green. Green enough, and with enough leaves to provide me shade.

What comes to mind is God’s indirect but everpresent love. I’m hot. Does He let an umbrella drop from the sky or an aircon pop up beside me? No, from the ground trees sprout, trees which not only provide shade, but breath out oxygen, replacing the heat-absorbing carbon dioxide. I’m hungry, and from the trees emerge fruits of all kinds– apples, oranges, mangoes etc.

The tree sits, peaceful and alive. I can’t help think it’s groundedness lies from the assurance that it is being what God assigned it to be, the silent but important channl through which His providence flows.

Would you rather be a sparrow than a tree? 🙂


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