October 16

This time of year it seems we pay more attention to trees. They are there all year round, but in the fall, they catch our attention with their brilliant colors and their swirling leaves in the air. Trees are sacred and very spiritual to me.  I like to touch their rough bark, feel the texture of their leaves and enjoy their fragrance. Being in the woods surrounded by trees, brings me peace and brings me closer to the presence of God. I am sitting here right now with my back door open listening to the wind blow through the leaves on the trees reminding me of the Holy Spirits’s presence. Trees can teach us important lessons like swaying in the wind, persevering, keeping our roots firmly planted and embracing the changing seasons, to mention a few. I find it meditative to just sit still and watch how a tree sways in the wind, bending ever so slightly and not resisting. If only I could sway like that when winds blow into my life! 
Many trees have become symbols of survival. One such tree is the lone elm tree that survived the Oklahoma bombing in 1995 and still stands. It was almost cut down due to the damage it took in the blast, but the community embraced it as part of the healing process and named it “Survivor Tree” and felt it represented a symbol of survival and the power to overcome tragedy. Today, seeds from that tree are taken to a nursery and grown into seedlings and distributed across the country to spread hope. And doesn’t that symbolize what we are to do as followers of Christ , spread hope? Yet, one more lesson to be learned from trees.

They are like trees planted along the riverbank, bearing fruit each season. Their leaves never wither, and they prosper in all they do. Psalm 1:3 (NLT)

Creator of all things, we thank you for the beauty of trees and for the lessons of strength that they teach us. Amen.

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