Adam had a party on Saturday with his friends at our house. We cleaned up pretty good and I now have a table to eat at. It's tucked into the corner of the dining room next to a window. I have eaten breakfast there every morning since it got cleared off and I watch the birds jumping around in the branches of a crape myrtle and the bushes. At one point all the birds flew away and I was looking at just the crape myrtle. When it was planted, it had plenty of room to grow healthy but the pear trees it was next to became overgrown and in order to get any light, its branches had to stretch tall, longer than crape myrtles are designed to be. The branches were tall and spindly but we never noticed because it was always tangled in with the pear branches. One day, a few years ago, there was a storm that caused the pear trees to split and fall.
It was then that we realized how long the branches actually were. Still, it looked strong enough so we left it alone. But when spring came, the limbs sprouted leaves and the weight was too much and the branches bowed under the weight and touched the ground. I trimmed it as much as I felt safe doing. If you do too much in one season, it may die. I wanted to save it if I could. Each fall and spring that I lived here afterward, I would trim some more, always careful to not trim too much. Last week I trimmed it up some like every spring. I saw more that could be done to it but I called it good for this season.
It wasn't until this morning that I looked at the tree and was amazed at how healthy and sturdy it looked!
And the first thing I thought of was how that tree was like us. We are frail and flawed but with time and the help of our Heavenly Father we can be made stronger. It isn't an instant thing. It takes time. And it also takes sometimes painful experiences but Heavenly Father knows how much pruning we can take at once and if we just have faith and endure our trials will be for our good. It will take us from a spindly ground hugging tree to a mighty, majestic oak.
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