Yesterday I had to have something precious cut down and removed because it was no longer viable or thriving, but rather dying by degree. It was hard to part with the Purple-Leaf Plum tree I first planted out back right after my dad passed, nearly a quarter century ago, in his honor. He adored nature; and it was the closest tree I could find in Phoenix back then to the brilliant hues of Red Maples which he adored!
I must admit, I got a bit sad thinking of the tree being cut down after all this time, and then again seeing it piled up in freshly cut pieces. I had to accept its slow demise over the last few months just to get to this point where I could even consider having it cut down! It surely seemed to be the right time to remove this beautiful specimen, which once was so glorious and colorful; but it surely wasn’t easy to accept it, lying there in pieces! At some point in my observation of the tree’s remnants, my emotions shifted from sadness to a stable contentment; there was a shift in mind and mood, in realizing there was so much more than just this one failed tree of honor connecting me with my dad’s passion for nature!
I realized that all of my life I’ve sought the refuge and peace of nature, enjoyed the wilderness and appreciated the beauty in almost every plant because of my dad’s influences and preferences! He shared his heart and soul’s passion for growing plants, gardening, landscaping, exploring the wilderness and seeing all the beauty found in God’s majestic natural designs with me; so I now have that same appreciation in my soul by which to honor his life’s legacy every day! God blessed us all with hearts, minds and senses by which we may appreciate the wondrous natural world around us; and I surely witnessed that in my dad’s life by example! And in the place of that beloved tree, I will create an edible garden around an old wooden picnic table I inherited just yesterday from a dear family friend. Everything continues in its seasons, for its reasons and for God’s purposes!