Wednesday, April 01, 2009

We all Need a TREE

Today, I read an email sent to me by a friend. It really spoke to me. I love trees and I love to take photos of trees. So this story of a tree reminded me of many a time when I've needed to give my troubles away because they were just to great for me to take with me throughout the day and pile them on someone else around me. Here's how my version of the story goes:

I asked an old friend who was a plumber to fix up an old farmhouse with me. He had a first rough day on the job: a flat tire which caused him to lose an hour of work, an old drill that quit on him and the old one-ton truck he drove refused to start for him at the end of the day. I offered to give him a lift home.

He sat really silent the whole drive back to his place, not saying a word. I didn't blame him - he'd had a few frustrations throughout the day that I was sure he was mulling over in his mind.

Once we got to his place, he invited me in to meet his family. Before we got to the house, I noticed him stop by a tree in the yard and hold out his hands towards the branches, pausing and touching the leaves. Then we continued on into the house.

As he was walking me back to my car, curiosity overtook me and I asked him why he stopped by the tree in the yard.

He smiled at me, "Oh that's my trouble tree. I know I'll always have troubles throughout the day - we can't get away from them. But I do know that my family doesn't need to be affected in a negative way by them and I sure don't need to take my frustrations out on them either. I'd rather not take them into the house with me, so I pause by the tree and hang the troubles out on it and ask God to take care of the troubles of that day for me. When I start a new day the next morning, I know they'll be there and I'll take them back with me..........But you know, when I come out each morning to pick them up, there aren't nearly as many troubles hanging on that tree that I remember leaving out here the night before."

I think we all need a tree, don't you? Does life ever go the way we want it? Why do we make such a big fuss over things that we can't control or get frustrated with the things that don't go our way? Oh, if only we could learn to take each day as it comes and do what we can and leave the rest of the troubles to God. Each day would be so much easier, would it not? There will always be thorns among the roses and bees among the flowers - but those critters have a very special job to do among those flowers. At times our days feel very uprooted, uptight and upside down, but what can we really do about it? Things will always happen that are out of our control...but God already knew that it would happen before the day even began. He sees the whole picture! He already knows how it's all going to turn out. Let's just give him each day as soon as we wake up each morning and ask Him to give us the strength to carry on, one day at a time. Wouldn't that be the best thing we could do for ourselves? I think so.

"Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we're here, we might as well dance." :-) And I know personally for myself, that I'd rather be dancing joyfully with my Heavenly Father and his Heavenly Host of Angels every day. Why allow the demons of bitterness, anger, unforgiveness, frustration, selfishness, hatred, bad attitudes and friction with others because of disunity destroy me and the rest of my days here on earth. Let's dance people! Let's look for the good in others and each situation around us, let's choose to overlook the faults and weaknesses of those around us, including ourselves, put a smile on our lips, lift up our faces, raise our hands and dance! Amen?? Don't you absolutely love going outside and seeing a beautiful, glistening, strong rainbow after the storm has passed - oh how I love those rainbows!

God takes pleasure in painting the skies around us for us to enjoy and see His beauty and glory. He does that for YOU and for me, each and every day. Listen to the birds, enjoy the sunrise and the sunsets, see the clouds passing over, pause by the stillness of the waters and look up at look at the trees all around. Such incredible beauty in His Creation that He's made for us to enjoy and savor. How HE LOVES YOU!!

God bless you!

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