As this truck drove past me, I could not help but notice this load bouncing in the back of the flatbed.
Up and down as the netting and ropes held it down. It seemed as if the tree was trying to escape from the grips of the landscape company. I snapped a quick picture and thought of how it must feel to be chopped down for others pleasure. This is the season that we cut trees, so that we can allow them to die in our homes as we decorate for the holidays. I have always been an artificial tree person, and I guess seeing the image of that tree thrashing for survival made me glad I am.
I love the smell of a Christmas tree and am not being critical of anyone who chooses to purchase a live tree. I’m just saying I realized I sometimes can feel like that tree, thrashing for my life because of the situation I’m in.
Occasionally life throws at you someone who challenges your character.
Sometimes people walk through your life that do not even realize that the words they are saying hurt others.
Groups of friends gather against others for a common goal, but in the meantime others are offended and sadden.
Recently, I found myself on the peripheral of a situation between two groups of parents. Both feeling like victims, neither seeing how their lack of communication was splintering a community. As an outsider to the entanglement, I am blessed that I was able to step back and look objectively at the scenario. Although even when you can clearly see one side being unreasonable and unintentionally hurtful, it can be difficult to reason with those that are reacting with emotion. How do you tell someone they are so wrong without doing exactly what they are doing – being offensive!
People are reasonable as individuals, unreasonable when in a crowd mentality.
Sadly what I witnessed was a splintered community by playground bullies, digging in their heels until they got their way. The ripple effect that comes from that can be far-reaching. When adults thrash around thinking they have been cut down and wronged they can be unreasonable and spiteful in their reactions. I pray that these reactions are forgivable by the ones that are hurting. Someone asked me how do we start to help a community heal. My only response is through our actions, our kindness, our moving forward and allowing the Holy Spirit to work in the hearts of all involved. We can not force others to heal, time and reflection will allow healing to happen. But the realization of how our actions affect others is profound.
How we react each day are reflected in the seeds we throw into the soil.
Do we throw seeds that are watered with love and acceptance?
Or do we throw seeds that are watered with resentment, anger and judgement?
I believe we will be measured by our faith, lived out through our actions.
May we never be cut down by unkind actions, like the trees that will come down this fall.
May we nurture the seeds we plant and trust the Spirit to allow them to grow.
Reflect on if your seeds produce trees tomorrow?
Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago. Warren Buffett