One of my daydreams is to have a tree house. Yes, for me. And I’m still waiting for it. Is that so wrong?
There was this really amazing tree house when I was a kid; it was more of a neighborhood treehouse, and from my current adult-size perspective, it was probably both illegal (as in trespassing on someone’s land) and not entirely safe, (OSHA would have had a hey-day). Truthfully, back then I doubt that anyone lost any sleep over it, including the adults. (One of the few positives I can say about the 1970’s.)
But the tree was stout and strong, and best of all, from a kid’s point of view, really, really tall. Tall enough to hold three stories of “house”; okay, so the third story was actually the roof of the second, but it sure took me a more than a few visits before I got the nerve to climb up there. Standing atop my arboreal perch, I would hold onto the tree’s sturdy branches and gently sway in the wind.
Never mind the fact that guardian angels were probably hovering all over that place; I’m still so glad to have had that experience. I’m very thankful that the tree was somehow planted by a seed that was possibly dropped there by a bird who was eating dinner on the fly. However it got there, it took root in the fertile soil, and did what a tree is supposed to do.
It grew and became a haven for squirrels, and birds, and insects, and teenage kids who want to challenge gravity and touch the sky. And in so doing it probably had its share of birds’ nests and fighting squirrels and burrowing bugs, not to forget several nails and planks hammered into its trunk. Most likely some of the branches got snapped in the process. A bit of bark fell to the ground here or there. Yet, I somehow don’t think the tree was, on the whole, any worse for wear. Perhaps even better, as it made its Creator smile.
It’s all very much like each individual in the Lord’s body of believers:
- Like a seed dropped from the mouth of a bird, or from the intentional hand of a farmer, it makes no difference where the seed has come from or where it has been, but that it is planted.
- A seed cannot become a tree unless it’s rooted. Trees are alive largely due to the fact that they generally don’t move from where they’ve been planted. (Or if they are, it’s done with great precision, planning, and care, not merely on some whim of the tree itself.)
- We sometimes have uncomfortable “guests” living our branches. With God’s help, we can sort out those which are acceptable and those which are not; nonetheless, discomfort is part of maturity.
“He will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the LORD has planted for his own glory.”
I hope someday to be waving from the top of my oak.
Isaiah 61:3, 4 Tyndale House Publishers Inc (2008-06-01). The One Year Bible NLT