The tree which moves some to tears of joy is in the eyes of others only a green thing that stands in the way. Some see nature all ridicule and deformity… and some scarce see nature at all. But to the eyes of the man of imagination, nature is imagination itself. ~William Blake
There was a cherry tree in the yard of my childhood home. My brother and I enjoyed climbing it.
I remember once, during cherry season, my brother and I climbed higher than before, trying to get to those sweet cherries. When he had had enough, my brother climbed down.
I, however, was stuck.
There was no going up and no coming down. My mother had to come out, climb the ladder, retrieve me, and carry me down.
About a day later, I climbed the tree again.
I got stuck again.
I wasn’t allowed to climb the tree after that.
Zaccheus was familiar with a tree, too.
Luke 19 tells us that he ran ahead of the crowd to climb a sycamore-fig tree. He was short and wanted to see Jesus among the people.
He must have had a relationship with that tree for it to pop into his head. Sycamore fig trees are about the size of apple or cherry trees, full of ripe fruit in the autumn. I wonder if his mom ever had to rescue him when he was a youngster.
Maybe he had a relationship with lots of trees since he was short. I don’t know.
But what I do know is that Zaccheus used what was right in front of him to get to know Jesus better.
He was excited, curious, determined.
He had heard something that piqued his interest and he wanted to know more. When Jesus saw him in the tree, Jesus invited himself to dinner at Zaccheus’s house.
What trees are along your path?
Is your child asking you questions about faith? Settle in those branches to read the Bible together and look for the answers.
Are you struggling with a health issue that the doctors don’t understand? Hold tightly to the trunk for a month of fasting and prayer while looking for healing and/or other options.
Maybe you’ve lost a job, a loved one, or hope. Don’t worry. Even a dead tree can be climbed.
Are you using what’s right in front of you to know the Savior of the world even better? Are you climbing your tree?
What does your tree look like?