When we went outside to play, Rowen ran from tree to tree, pointed and shouted at the top of his lungs, Tre -e - e - e - e - e!, as if greeting a long-lost friend. And then he began to hug them. That’s right: my grandson’s a tree hugger, and I’m proud to say it.
But with the Derecho of Friday a week ago, we have been reminded that trees are not eternal, that they too are subject to a force more powerful, the force of wind: that which can be measured and experienced, but not seen.
I’m one of the lucky ones: no tree took the life of anyone I know nor injured anything I am personally attached to. If I were, I do not know how I would look at trees now, whether I would still see their beauty and grandeur or whether I would view them with suspicion and fear.
|Looking west from my back yard|
I look to the trees and I imagine God not as some old man, but as a little boy in a garden of his own making, a garden where the winds have come through, leaving some of the trees standing while others lie impotently dying on their sides. And I imagine this boy-child of a God greeting each one with the enthusiasm that only little boys on an adventure can show: enthusiastically joyful for those who live, enthusiastically sorrowful for those who die, each greeted as beloved friend, each fully embraced for the tree that it is.
Winds come and winds go. Trees thrive and trees die. God-treasures all.