The Taproot

I visited a family home this week in preparation for a memorial service for the mother.  She and her husband had been married for 54 years and had lived in this house for most of that time. They have raised four (now adult) children here and until some very recent updates, the house has remained relatively unchanged in its arrangements and décor.

During our conversation the husband pointed me to a large weeping willow tree in the back yard. He explained to me that he had planted it about 45 years ago. He said that for the first five years it did nothing. Every year, during those first five, he had to secure it with new stakes and a protective fence so that the wind and snow would not destroy it. Finally after five years it took off on its own and now towers over the property with regal strength.

The widower said that he learned the reason for the five years of dormancy and the subsequent growth. It was necessary for the tree to develop a taproot that went deep enough to access water. Once that taproot had a water supply the tree grew and the external protection was no longer needed. 

I borrowed this story at his wife’s memorial service. I compared the tree to our personal journey and identified the water as Jesus. Until our hearts encounter the Living Water we, too, need to be propped up in all kinds of temporary ways.

I challenged the attendees at the memorial service, I challenge myself, and I challenge the readers of this BLOG to drink deeply and daily from Jesus, the well of life and sustainer of our way.

Do you have stories from ordinary life that can be borrowed for recognizing Jesus?

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