A leaf, branch or root?

Chapter 19

This past weekend, I observed a substantial tree planted close to a body of water. Its extensive root system was particularly noteworthy.

You may have encountered this metaphorical illustration of comparing a tree with relationships. While it may appear straightforward, the interpretation depends on the context and depth of the relationship in question.

Are you a leaf, a branch or a root?

There are three kinds of people in our lives. The people in our lives are like parts of a tree.

We have the leaves, the branches and the roots. Some people are like leaves on a tree, when the wind blows they go with it. When the season changes, they change. They’re like temporary friendships, they change. Like leaves, they’re beautiful in the beginning, but eventually they fall away. When we think about this, we can remember people who have been leaves in our own lives. We can appreciate the lessons they brought and have gratitude for the moments and detachment from any pain they caused, they helped us grow at that time.

The second type of people in our lives are like branches, we have to be careful with them because they can often deceive you. They make you think they’re a good friend. They’re really strong and they’re there for you. But the minute you step out on them, they can break and fall. We’ve all had people who say ‘I’ll always be there for you, I’m just a phone call away’. But when you follow up on those promises, you find that they were hollow.
They’re like temporary friendships: the leaves represent those who come and go, fleeting and temporary in our lives. Then in our own lives we know moments when we’ve been branches for others and had branches in our lives. Often we may have promised a lot and not been able to live up to it because of our own shortcomings and the same is true for others. This gives us the opportunity to be more honest with ourselves and with those around us. We need to surround ourselves with people who contribute to our overall emotional, mental and physical well-being.

The third type of person are those who are like the roots. People who are like the roots of a tree that are permanent. Friendships that go through everything, through the rock and the hard place and back, and grow from it, and still stand strong as friends worth keeping, and still stand.

The bible summs it up very nicely in Jeremiah 17.8

But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.

Wishing you a great start to this new week!

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