Fr. Ron Kelso sent me this picture a few days ago. I looked at it once, then again, and then I couldn’t take my eyes off of it.
I was mesmerized by it and I couldn’t understand as to why!
The tree was felled, yes! And it continued to grow and flourish in new directions and continued to be an object of beauty. Yes. But, why?
What enabled that tree to continue to live, and not only live, but live with a new “flourish,” to be a tree causing attention and bringing people to admire it and find meaning in it?
I stared at the picture for a long time and finally, “bingo,” it hit me!
Why was the tree able to “never give up?”
The tree did not have “within itself” to do so…it was able to do so only because it was still “rooted!” It was connected to the earth! Its roots were still surrounded in the ground sapping up the nutrients and water.
It was this “rootedness” that allowed it to never give up. The strength to never give up did not come from the tree itself but from its rootedness to the earth.
I now looked at this picture with a completely different perspective.
This tree can give each of us, human beings, strength and power by its example, but we need to see that the key is its “rootedness,” not some element “within itself” that gave it the power to continue to live and flourish.
What does that mean for us?
If we are attracted to this picture and we find energy in it for us, we need to be reminded that we too need to be rooted.
As Disciples of Jesus, we need to be rooted. We need to be rooted in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. When we are rooted, we can be felled, and we can continue to live and to flourish, just like that tree.
But we need to be rooted!
If you are attracted to this picture, if it gives you strength, hope, and perseverance in your life whenever you have been felled, then remember, that you cannot do it by yourself! You must be rooted!
Are you rooted in the Gospel, the Good News of Jesus Christ?