Climbing Trees: A Good Friday Reflection.

Climbing trees was once a passion. Perhaps you experienced this passion as well as a child. Sadly, with the responsibilities and self-awareness of maturity, many of us have forgotten the simple joys of escaping to the tranquility of a tree.

Trees are featured prominently in Scripture. There were two central trees in Eden. The Tree of Life and The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. These two trees are important to the development of our understanding of our origins, sin, and our ongoing lost and found relationship with God. According to the Genesis account, Adam, disobeyed at The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, forfeiting access to the Tree of Life. Spiritually then our first parents plunged all of their offspring into death.

The perspective that our collective history hinges on two individuals involved with two trees is paramount to our understanding of our personal redemption. The Apostle Paul writes in Romans 5:19 ESV “For as by one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous.” 

Adam disobeyed at the first tree, Jesus obeyed at that last tree, a cross fashioned from a tree.

Trees still provide shades of contemplation and enlightenment. Do you find comfort or shame in the branches of your family tree? What about the roots and limbs of your hopes and dreams? Are you cultivating a tree that will prove to be a legacy of hope for future generations?

Reflecting on climbing trees as a child, I was reminded of the moments sitting high in a tree, and what that experience provided:

1. A change of perspective: Sitting high in a tree certainly changes your view. I could see for miles from my vantage point. Perhaps there are some ideas and concepts you need to allow your mind to transverse to change how you look at things, and what you behold in others.

2. A place of peace: The shelter of a tree provides opportunities for contemplation and serenity that are difficult to find in our tumultuous worlds. Standing under a tree can provide a reprise to the heat of the day. In every life, we all need shelter, peace. Find that place and protect it!

3. A place of power: Sitting in the tree gave me a real sense of power. I was far away and far above all who would wound me. If power has to do with position, then the trees in our lives provide places of strength to escape the weaknesses of our daily struggles.

As I reflect on the cross, fashioned from a tree, I understand that it was there my Savior died for me.

Have you discovered the comfort of a tree? Don’t allow it to just be a memory but may it continue to define your reality. 

“The trees are God’s great alphabet:
With them He writes in shining green
Across the world His thoughts serene.”
~Leonora Speyer