4 Life Lessons From A Tree

July 15, 2023

For many years now I have routinely hiked the rolling hill terrain in majestic Doughton Park on the Blue Ridge Parkway. In route up the grassy knoll, you can see in the distance, a singular tree, perched atop. Alone it stands, surrounded by a 360-degree view of pastures and distant mountains. When reaching the top, one stands in awe at the beauty everywhere the eyes look, and you are simply compelled to throw arms open wide and belt out, “The hills are alive, with the sound of music”. But, I am relentlessly drawn to this singular tree, standing atop this grassy mountain, with beauty all around. I have known all along, there are lessons to learn from this tree but it has taken many hikes, both solo and with others, for the tree to reveal its lessons. Here is what I have learned.

#1. It is okay to stand alone and standing alone is often when you gain the most perspective and have the best views.

#2. To be strong, despite the storms that surround you or the howling winds that last for what seems like an eternity, you must have roots that grow deep and wide in the fertile soil of God’s love and words so that you are not overtaken or toppled.

#3. There are times in life, as with this tree, when you lose something important….precious…. for the tree, a limb. For me or you, a relationship, your health, a job, or a loved one….and the loss alters you….forever…. but does not destroy you. Why? Because your roots are firmly planted in God’s rich love and grace, allowing you to remain, standing in strength and beauty.

#4. Because of where you are firmly planted because you are drawing daily from the rich fertile soil, because you are able to weather the periodic storms, you are then able to provide shade or shelter for those who pass your way…..

Then I ask myself…..where am I planted……

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