Tag: tree

A Great Fall

Recently we lost a huge oak tree on our property. A thunderstorm with high winds toppled it. Flooding caused other damage but our greatest loss was this big oak tree.

IMG_0763My biggest surprise in examining the tree that fell was that there seemed to be no root system. That is quite concerning because from all appearances that tree seemed to be just as healthy as the other large oaks surrounding it. It was only after it fell I discovered the roots were not strong enough to keep that mighty oak from falling during a storm.

What happened to my tree was similar to what happened to the houses Jesus described in Matthew 7. There were two men and two houses in that story. When a storm came with great winds, rain and floods, one house stood and another fell down. The difference was the foundation. One house was built on a rock and stood firm against the wind, floods and rain. The other, because iIMG_0765t was constructed on sand, fell. Jesus said, “Great was its fall.”

On the outside, it might have appeared that both these houses were the same. It was the foundation – or in the case of my oak tree, the root – that was the problem.

The stability of the house that survived the storm and the inability of the other to stand was determined by decisions made by their owners. The house built on the rock was built by a wise man who knew the value of time invested to construct a solid foundation. A foolish man built his house on sand- so eager to get it built that he gave no thought to the need for a firm foundation. The possibility of a storm completely destroying his home either never crossed his mind or he decided to take the risk. Either way, he was wrong.

Our spiritual lives are like that. Our strength comes from the Spirit of the Lord – a firm foundation. Those rooted and grounded in His love will be able to withstand the storms of life. Those who are not will fall.

strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, that you may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height – to know the love of God which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God (Ephesians 3:17-19).

The Life Span of a Tree

I love trees. One of my criteria for a good place to live is trees – in the surroundings and around the house. Trees add such a wonderful dimension to enjoyment for me.

I am often amazed at the difference between standing in the sun and slipping under the shade of a tree on a hot day. The welcome temperature change is immediate. Sitting under a tree while sipping a cool glass of sweet tea – well, what could be better than that?

Another reason I love trees is that they provide a habitat for my favorite animal – birds. Without trees, my feathered friends would not have a place to call home. My enjoyment of sitting under a tree or near them is magnified because of the chatter of the birds to each other and their songs – pure bliss.

90px-Dying_Tree_-_geograph.org.uk_-_802371Unfortunately, I sometimes observe the death of trees – in my yard, my neighborhood and throughout the landscape of the larger area where I reside in Texas. There have been many causes for these, but I am always sad to see the death of a beautiful tree.

Some trees have a predictable and fairly short life span. For years, sitting on my back porch, I enjoyed a beautiful red bud tree. That once healthy tree is on a downward spiral. It is dying. I’m not sure there is anything we could have done to save it. Red bud trees rarely live past forty years. Our home is over one hundred years old, so this tree could have been here for a long time.

Recently one of my neighbors lost a huge oak tree in their front yard. A strong wind blew it down, revealing a trunk that must have been diseased for quite some time as it was completely hollow. That tree might have lasted for many more years had it not been for the decay that had been hidden from view. After thunderstorms in our area, I noticed more trees that toppled, sometimes resulting in damage to property around it.

God made all these trees and He knows the life span of each one of them. There is one tree that He created that will never die. For those who know Christ as Savior, we will all get to enjoy this tree and all it has to offer. I am looking forward to seeing this tree. It will be one of the great gifts of eternity.

Then the Lord God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of Us, knowing good and evil; and now, he might stretch out his hand, and take also from the tree of life, and eat and live forever” – therefore, the Lord God sent him out from the garden of Eden…To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God (Genesis 3:22, 23; Revelation 2:7).