The Giving Tree

For some reason, I felt prompted to read The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein – a poem that I likely have not read for about twenty years. I found a digital copy of the poem online and read it aloud just now.

I nearly wept when I finished it.

If you have a moment, I would encourage you to look online for the text of the poem and take five minutes or so to read it. Reading aloud, especially, helps to keep me present and focused in the moment.

For those of you who haven’t read it – or, like me, hadn’t read it in a while – I will not share any spoilers here. However, I will offer my reflections on it; my thoughts are neither unique nor original in this respect, but I wanted to share them anyway.

A couple of things:

  • Each of us is the boy, focused primarily on making sure that our needs and desires are met first. Try as we might, without the Holy Spirit’s intervention, this is the default condition of our hearts.
  • God is the tree. What a remarkable portrait of unconditional love! Think about it.

Today, I am grateful to be the entirely unworthy (in terms of merit) the recipient of such abundant, unconditional love. Have you ever known of another human being who has loved you like that – so sacrificially, placing your well- being above his or her own? It’s quite staggering when you think about it.

Dear Lord, I am grateful for the fact that Your love continues to give without end, day in and day out. You are the original Giving Tree, tending to the needs of all of Your children. In terms of the world’s wisdom, You might appear – to some, anyway – to be diminished and not relevant, but in reality, Your roots are deep and strong! Assuredly, You are always relevant, and will outlast anything or anybody crossing Your path.

At times, though, Your presence appears to be unassuming; however, this does not mean that You are devoid of strength and power – quite the opposite! You possess both of these attributes in abundance, and so many others, as well. Thank You for loving me so tenderly. In Your name I pray, Amen.

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