Author: Yvonne Hymel

 

Two trees stand outside my patio doors in view of my prayer space.  Planted as saplings, they are now full grown.  Through the years of their growth, they have often served as a focus of my meditation, supplying multiple metaphors for my life experiences.  Reflecting upon their changes and response to the elements that surround them has brought insight, understanding and acceptance of so much in my own life.  Through them, I’ve heard the whispers of God so often I call them my Wisdom Trees.

 

I’ve noted how they are rooted in good soil and spreading their branches offer their gifts to the birds that rest there and squirrels that scamper up and down the trunk.  It reminds me of the importance of being grounded in daily silent contemplative prayer that I may be able to offer my gifts, received from God who dwells within.

 

Of course, the seasons of the year writ large in the changes they display each year, let me meditate on the changes in my own life.  It’s summer now, a season that drags on seemingly endlessly here in the deep south but it’s September and children returning to school at least reminds us that summer will indeed lose its grip.  So, while summer represents time of production, I know that those days for me are more than waning.  My children are grown, my professional career ended and these days of serving my family and ministry will soon morph into a less active, more contemplative supportive presence.  Yet I choose to be faithful to what I’ve been called until God says – perhaps through my wisdom trees, that it’s time to let go of even that.

 

The changing seasons, the trees’ response to wind and storm, the aging of the bark from new to old, these and so many more in the life of my trees, teach me, guide me, and draw me into meditative prayer.  Stay tuned for more in this blog from “My Wisdom Trees” as I  share some of what I’ve heard of God’s voice spoken through nature.

 

Earth’s crammed with heaven,

And every common bush afire with God;

And only he who sees takes off his shoes;

The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries.