A Firmly Planted Tree.

This morning I began reading The Book of Psalms. Psalms is my favorite book and I find myself there at least a couple times weekly.

Psalm 1, a wisdom Psalm, seems to be an overreaching Psalm touching upon pretty much every topic from the entirety of the Book of Psalms. From how men and women should and shouldn’t act to the judgment of God. But what stood out to me this morning was verse 3,

“He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, Which yields its fruit in its season And its leaf does not wither; And in whatever he does, he prospers.” (New American Standard Bible, Psalm 1:3)

A week or so ago, I was lying in bed reading and I heard what I thought was the beginning of fireworks. The pop and crackle that would lead to the explosion. I didn’t think anything of it until Russell came into our room and said, “Where do you think that tree landed?” It was dark so we grabbed the big flashlights, turned on the outside lights, and began a visual search through the woods from the safety of our deck. The tree crashing to the ground was so loud that our neighbors across the street from us texted to make sure we were okay. We couldn’t see much in the darkness, but it didn’t seem that the tree had gone down near the house. As the wind was continuing to howl, however, I didn’t sleep much that night talking to all the trees around us about how much we love them and how strong and firmly planted they are and that we trust they will stay put. (What? You don’t talk to your trees during bad storms? I began that practice in our old house in Northern Virginia as our yard was filled with huge, firmly planted oak trees that sheltered our home from the sun, rain, and smaller falling trees.)

The next morning, I received this picture from Russell. It doesn’t look big in the picture, but it is…was a very tall tree. Still firmly planted but rotted from the inside out. Kind of like we humans can be.

Yesterday in the car, Sarah and I were talking about our self-talk and how it can bloom into obsession and other thinking. Overthinking is a classic trauma response and I’ve always been an over-thinker. I obsess over what I said, should have said, what the other person said, etc. We were discussing a particular event that happened to me recently and I admitted I could not stop thinking about the she said/he said aspect of it. Our Sarah is much wiser than I was at her age and while she is not an overthinker she got where I was coming from. Even though she said things to me that I had said to myself, coming from her made me feel better. I was finally able to let the entire situation go and pronounce out loud that I had said what I said with a loving heart and intention and explained myself on top of it and it was now up to the other person to accept it or not. Before yesterday, I admit I was being eaten alive by my overthinking and was even finding myself becoming bitter to the point of breaking off any sort of relationship with the other person involved. Rotting from the inside out is exactly how I felt.

How easy it is for some of us (me, it is easy for me) to stew over a small thing until it becomes a big tree crashing down. If you find yourself obsessing and overthinking a conversation or encounter, reach out to a wise and trusted firmly rooted friend or counselor (or adult daughter) and talk it out. Getting that outside perspective might be what you need to stop the rot from starting.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s