“Wisdom begins in wonder.” ~Socrates
Last Easter we planted a Chinese Fringe tree in our front yard. It already had white blooms and as more opened, the tree was covered with clusters of small white blooms. It is a deciduous tree and the blooms appear after the leaves each Spring. As temperatures soared in July, we noticed a few brown leaves and then more. We made sure the little tree was watered deeply every day; for awhile it seemed that we would lose it. But over a period of weeks, new green leaves outnumbered the brown ones. Gradually, the tree announced its survival
Withering drought has caused loss of many trees in our area, particularly recently planted ones. I am glad our little tree is a survivor!. In the springtime we often talk about new beginnings and renewal. I am glad for the fringe tree’s lesson – when I am experiencing a season of drought in my soul, there can be another Spring.
Anyone who has been around small children knows how often we hear the question “Why?” I have been asking that question about my fig harvest this year. We have a fine fig tree in the garden that typically has so many green figs it is hard to keep up with the harvest as they ripen. This year we had an unusually wet June and although there were hundreds of green figs and they began to ripen early, harvest slowed and stopped completely in the second week. Our brutal Texas heat came on suddenly. My research tells me the tree went into conservation mode and began aborting its fruit. Even though we watered heavily, nothing brought back the production so the hard little green figs began to drop to the ground, wasted and of no use to anyone. Not even the birds would eat them.
The problem is that figs are shallow rooted and easily stressed. That reminded me of my own need for being rooted deeply to be able to take the heat and avoid reacting in damaging ways to the stress of our uncertain times!
” May your roots go down deep into the soil of God’s marvelous love;” Ephesians 3: 17, The Living Bible
My neighbor recently brought me a gift: a bunch of fragrant French Tarragon. tied with yellow ribbon. Tarragon can be very frail, difficult to grow, but also quickly losing its sweet licorice like flavor. Unlike most herbs, drying the leaves weakens the flavor so this lovely gift needed to be used right away. As I later stood in my kitchen chopping the sweet smelling, silvery leaves to put into sauce for Tarragon Chicken, I smiled, picturing my neighbor as she cut and tied up my herb bouquet. I packed up a serving of the dish to take over to her. Gifts are appreciated best by using them. Our gratitude is best expressed in making use of what we are given!.