Ten Summer Tree
For the past ten years,
I’ve watched a slim young tree pass through the seasons
on the other side of my kitchen window.
It shades my house in summer,
drops yellow leaves in fall,
and stands silent through long Alberta winters.
When the world opens its eyes in spring,
my tree wakes up to produce tiny green buds.
Its neighbors quickly move into full-leafed glory,
but my tree gets stuck in the tiny-bud stage.
During the tree’s first few springs, I concluded, at this point, that the tree had died.
But, just when I’d given up,
the miniature buds would dramatically unfurl into a grand green canopy overnight.
This month... this week... today...
after a winter that was even longer than usual,
trees everywhere are waving leaves in celebration,
showing off pink and white and red blossoms,
and casting sweet, indefinable scents onto the air.
My tree has no blooms and casts no scents, sweet or otherwise.
Its bits of green are still tiny.
But, because of our years together,
I know my tree is growing and preparing.
It just doesn’t show off the work til it's complete.
As I wait for the morning when I’ll see the fruit of my tree’s hidden labor,
I feel my life is like my ten summer tree.
I’m in a year of professional limbo, accented by months of intriguing health issues.
It feels like winter –
all my leaves fell off months ago,
and I’m waiting, dormant, to see what life will bring out in spring.
I know my tree will soon explode into green for its tenth summer,
because I’ve seen it happen nine times before.
God has already guided and provided for me in many seasons,
so I trust Him to do it once again.
As long as my winter lasts,
through weeks of wondering and days of waiting,
I'll choose to trust Him.
I will trust that,
He'll show me a new path to take,
give me strength to do what needs to be done,
and use my life to offer good and beauty to the world.