Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Trees Tell It All

Have you ever really and truly looked at a tree and it's roots? The other day I was helping out my parents with some of their gardening. My mom is all of 5'3" tall and she doesn't like any of her trees to be too much taller than her. This always gets a giggle out of me, but once I helped her trim all the tall and wacky branches off and once I took off all the dead branches and leaves I understood why. The tree looked healthy and pretty. It looked neat and in control, and the whole yard seemed to look better. After I was done, I began to think about trees as a symbol for people... I began to see that we are so alike. We are rooted just as they are, but the soil that roots us is our family, friends and experiences. We grow, just as they do, up and sometimes out if we aren't careful. We need sunlight, food, air and water just as they do (although they do make their own food). And when conditions are right, we blossom and bloom just as they do (we can even do it yearly or more than once a year, aren't we lucky?!).

Then I began to think of which tree would best represent me... and I thought of the bonsai. Sure, I am 5'10" tall, so I am not like the tiny tree in that respect but in so many others I am. I am not rooted deeply in a large ground of soil... I am in a pot that can easily be transported... this is like my life because I work internationally and never stay anywhere too long. My life is portable, but my soil is RICH in nutrients so that I grow appropriately. This represents my family and friends, while I am not surrounded by the whole woods, I am surrounded by the richest of experiences and the most supportive and loving of family and friends. My roots are tightly wound in wire so that they don't get out of control, they are gnarled around each other and this is like me too... I am held tight by those I love so that I can know the bounds of that love and I appreciate it so deeply. Like the bonsai, I grow but I grow mostly because my gardener allows it. I deeply believe in the hand of God on my life, He is my gardener. And like the human who cares for the bonsai, he takes extra special care with me. I need just the right amount of light to keep me strong but to stop me from burning. I need just the right amount of water to help me stay well but to keep me from drowning. I need to be pruned often so that I don't get out of control... and when I look at my experiences and past relationships and their failures, I know that it was a time of pruning and nourishing. The tree tells it all.


  1. What an intriguing analogy! I especially like the analogy of God as the gardener who is pruning and nourishing us through our life experiences (both positive and negative experiences).

  2. I'm re-reading Leota's Garden by Francine Rivers this week, it has some wonderful gardening analogies in the story that I think you'd appreciate

  3. Loved this post, Ang....love being a part of your soil, girl! <3 Sophia