“There once was a little plant that was small and whose growth was stunted, for it lived under the shade of a giant oak tree. The little plant valued the shade that covered it and highly regarded the quiet rest that its noble friend provided. Yet there was a greater blessing prepared for this little plant. One day a woodsman entered the forest with a sharp ax and felled the giant oak. The little plant began to weep, crying out, “My shelter has been taken away. Now every fierce wind will blow on me, and every storm will seek to uproot me!” The guardian angel of the little plant responded, “No! Now the sun will shine and showers will fall on you more abundantly than ever before. Now your stunted form will spring up into loveliness, and your flowers, which could never have grown to full perfection in the shade, will laugh in the sunshine. And people in amazement will say, “Look how that plant has grown! How gloriously beautifully it has become by removing that which was its shade and its delight!”
Today’s short parable was taken from a page in the “Streams In The Desert” devotional and is one that I can definitely relate to. For most of my life, I had plenty of things shading me from the harsh realities of this world. From once having an abundance of money, great health, close friends, Higher Power guidance, and deep support from spiritual teachers, my life has been entirely stripped of most of them now and become devoid of all that I once thought was needed to keep protecting me in my own shade of life.
Yet, somewhere in my depths is a similar belief like this parable, in that maybe each of those things were stripped from my life to help me grow stronger, to blossom more in the long run, and to become all that which God always intended me to become. It’s a hard thought I know, and one that I must step out in faith every day, as of late, to keep believing in, given how much I feel the world seems to be scorching me these days. But, in the end, I believe that my faith and belief in the meaning of this parable will deepen my spiritual roots and brighten my spiritual blooms to a level I’ve never known and that alone helps to keep me going, one day at a time.
Dear Lord, I may not understand why all the things I once thought protected me have been stripped away from my life. Yet, who am I to question Your actions? Because in the end, I have faith that maybe it is in all those things you have been stripping away, that were necessary to remove to help me become a beacon of Light for You. May I continue to trust in You God, no matter how much I may be feeling exposed to the harsh realities of this world.
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson