While driving the other day, I began noticing the different types of trees, and it reminded me of the people that we all have in our lives.
I noticed some tall, stately trees, strong and sturdy. You could tell that these trees had been there a long time and had weathered a lot of storms. If you remember back to days of study plant biology, you know that trees have a root system that gives them nutrients but also helps them stand firm. These taller-than-the-rest trees reminded me of those people that have been in our lives for as long as we can remember, our parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles. Maybe it’s older people in our neighborhood or church that we remember when we think of this category.
On my drive, I saw some very colorful trees. Their leaves were bright, vibrant and they instantly brought joy when they came in sight. These trees represent our friends and loved ones who bring us joy on our journey through life, those that we laugh with and that share the changes in our life. I noticed that some small trees were recently planted that looked like the big colorful ones. This brought to mind, children. Children exude colorful joy.
I also notice the evergreen trees. We need evergreen people in our lives, those constant never changing, friends that we can go to when our world is off kilter, and we know that they will be there. The evergreen people remind us to never give up.
There are also trees that touch the power lines and cause friction. We all have those people in our lives too. We know who they are. I’m betting someone came to your mind just now. Those people seem to rub against our power lines and irritate us. If trees cause enough friction to be dangerous or to pull the power lines down, then they may need to be pruned. But if you will notice there are plenty of trees living within the power lines, and since they are doing no real harm they are left there. These are the people that we just have to learn to coexist with even though they rub us the wrong way.
This Thanksgiving let’s be thankful for the trees in our lives. Let’s be thankful for those stately trees that have gone on before us and have always been in our lives. Be thankful for the colorful friends and children that bring joy to our lives and for our constant evergreens. And yes, we even want to be thankful for those trees that cause us friction because they are there to teach us a lesson about patience.
All our tree relationships can also teach us aspects of our Heavenly Father. Just like the stately trees he goes before us. He is strong and mighty. Just like the colorful trees, he is the source of joy. Just like the evergreen, he is our constant in an ever-changing world. We are to learn to deal with those that bring us friction just as he is patient and loves us unconditionally. Aren’t we thankful for that?
“I thank my God every time I remember you. In my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy.” (Philippians 1:3-4) (NIV)