...with a husband and 5 sons, I am truly outnumbered....stories and thoughts on life from a mom in a houseful of little men!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

So Many Trees: day 22

I delight in trees.  I love how they dance in windy weather, and I love the music made as the breeze rushes through their leaves.  I enjoy learning how to identify the various kinds, and discovering how alike or different they are from others.  My heart soars at the turn of color in autumn, the silhouettes against winter skies, beautiful and intricate buds unfurling in springtime, and the lushness trees boast during summer months.  I love to pad across soft carpets of needles, shush through fallen leaves, collect acorns, and play with maple seeds.  As you must know, they make incredible helicopters!

Aside from all this, and the enjoyment I receive from other aesthetic qualities of trees, they hold other significance for me.  I've always been drawn to scripture regarding them.

"They shall be like a tree, planted by the river of water, which brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not whither, and whatever he does shall prosper."  
Psalm 1:3

 In a particularly trying time in my life, I felt as though I had been hacked off, all jagged as an old stump.  I felt broken.  Discouraged.  Worthless.  Without hope.  And then I read Daniel 4:15, regarding King Nebuchadnezzar being severely humbled by God:

"But leave the stump of its roots in the earth, bound with a band of iron and bronze, amid the tender grass of the field. Let him be wet with the dew of heaven. Let his portion be with the beasts in the grass of the earth."

Though it was true, God had allowed for me to be hacked off to the very bottom at that point in my life, but I did have hope, and that was the hope that although I was completely broken, my God was also protecting my roots.  He was protecting my source of life and sustenance with a strong band of iron and bronze.  He would not allow for me to be completely snuffed out.  There was still the hope of new growth.

And so I began to love not only trees themselves, but what they represented to me.  I put up artwork of trees and photos of trees.  They decorate our house all over to this day, reminders of the author of those trees and how He is growing me stronger.  I especially love the tall, strong, soaring types.  The ones with multiple and thick branches which reach toward the heavens.  Those, like this ancient Cedar, give me the most hope.  That is what I want to be like.  Strong.  Immoveable. 
 In this particular area of the South, trees are very present in every different height, many towering so high above us.
They vary in girth, many of which we cannot span the circumference, even if 3 or 4 of us link hands.  Some trees here are familiar to me, and many are not.  Would you believe there are over 100 native species of trees in the area we presently live in? That's about ten times the number of species we're accustomed to seeing.
It's amazing.  A simple afternoon stroll in the yard yields a nature lesson every day for us.  Recently, I went out with one of our little guys on a leaf hunt for his Kindergarten project.  In five minutes, he had a pillow case full of dozens of types of leaves.
 We're learning all we can.  We're making fun projects out of tree parts, and even eating tree parts.  Just this week, we were amazed to discover we have a Persimmon tree growing in our yard.
I'm thankful for details within natural beauty which teach us of deeper life truths.  

"But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds of the air, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish of the sea inform you."   Job 12:7-8 

It's true.  The creation is declaring the beauty of The Creator, no matter where you find yourself.  

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