Lately I've been spending a lot of time thinking about landscaping. It's the harvest season and - I've thoroughly enjoyed the boxes of apples and peaches and the baking that is associated with an abundance of fruits and vegetables. As I flip through pages of Home & Garden I am drawn to the images of settled, thriving, abundant trees. Not only are they fruitful, but they are strong enough to resist the wind and elements - deep enough to thrive in difficult seasons.
I'm drawn in to the pictures of two wooden chairs beneath a weeping willow - sheltered by the shade in a pristine carpet of grass. Vines reach around and through, creating a net of grapes and beautiful fanning leaves. Wysteria clusters hang like friends bending an ear to an interesting topic and evergreens stand tall and courageous even in the threat of approaching snow.
As I look around in my world I see I am also drawn to people the same way. Drawn to those who make me see deeper, assess my life more profoundly, and yearn for maturity and wisdom. As my circumstances force me to stretch, I search for those who have also weathered difficult storms. What fruits have they produced? How do they stand tall and courageous? And what does it feel like to stand with them?
There is a season when the thrill of the first radish sprouts can bring a smile to my face. There is a time of excitement and beginnings. Today, I yearn for stability - that force - that steadiness - that comes from mature trees. Deeply rooted, unmoving, protected.
That is where I will pull up my wooden seat and rest. That speaks peace to my soul.