Weather the Season
HITOP Teams, a woe is defined as things that cause sorrow or distress; troubles. I believe we all face this at some point in our life, perhaps you are right now, so I created the WOE Writer. This Word of Encouragement is to challenge you to Think differently, Hear differently, See things Differently, and ultimately Respond differently, by responding with an encouraged heart.
As I write this WOE I look outdoors and reflect on the vast trees and wonder what I could learn from them. These perennial plants experience many different conditions in their lifetime. Conditions which tend to be more environmental, like: freezing, fires, drought, flood, wind, lightning. However, other conditions are more “wounds” or markings to demonstrate how others can impact them, like when a bear or deer scratches or rips off their bark or when insects or pests stripping away core nutrients in their leaves and limbs. While they face these tough conditions their response is truly inspiring. Their response is to adapt, not die. They change with the extremes of heat (fire), cold (freezing), and wind by leveraging the core materials they are made of to hang on to what they need to survive, shedding everything else. When a tree no longer needs it’s leaves, instead of holding on and causing more damage, they shed them.
In this short story from author Rick Warren he shares the persistence of a tree and its care taker. See how important it is to never give up and to continue nurturing what makes you grow.
Unlike most other plants, Chinese bamboo is quite unique on its own. When this bamboo is planted, watered, and nurtured for the whole growing season, it does not outwardly develop even just for an inch. Then, on the next growing season, the farmer must continue to irrigate, fertilize and care for the bamboo tree and yet nothing happens – it fails to sprout just the same.
And as the seasons go in and out, the farmer has to continue caring for the bamboo for four consecutive years. What could really be discouraging is the farmer has nothing substantial to demonstrate for all of his labor in caring and growing the tree. Four lonely years of hard work and caring and yet you have nothing!
And then on the fifth year...the bamboo tree shoots up to more than 80 feet all in just one growing season! Now, that is a very astonishing demonstration of the power!
Now, you might be thinking: Did the small tree loll inactive for four years and then just decides to grow dramatically on the fifth? I think the answer is quite clear for us to see. The little tree was actually developing itself underground by expanding its root system to make it tough enough to sustain its impending external growth in the fifth year and even beyond.
Had the tree failed to build up a strong and able underground foundation, it would be impossible for it to keep on growing when it is time to sprout outside into the outside world.
What about you….is there something you are holding on to today that you need to shed. Perhaps anger, stress, worry, anxiety, fear, or something else which maybe causing damage because you will not let go? Shed it! Shed it and realize this is only a season, spring is coming and with the right preparation and attitude you too can weather it and bloom again!
"I do not think there is any other quality so essential to success of any kind as the quality of perseverance. It overcomes almost everything, even nature." John D. Rockefeller
Until next time...
Chris Hewitt, The WOE Writer