How Trees Are Like People

As I was out on a ride today, I noticed trees that had fallen, most of them were big trees. It came to my attention the age old question, if a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?

In October, 2011 two giant sequoia trees fell in the Sierra Nevadas. The trees had been around for 1500 years and appeared to be perfectly healthy. The forest service thinks that a wet winter caused the ground to be too soggy to hold the roots, which are relatively shallow. These trees can live to be 4000 years old so these two trees were what we would call teenagers.

These trees that have fallen, especially the big ones, remind me how any one of us can fall at anytime. We could be doing all the right things and then fall for one of the devils lies. We could have a great marriage then hit a bad spell where we start to  fight with our spouse then someone else smiles at you and you cross over to the other side. It could be someone hurt you so you turn to food for comfort. It could just be that you think you are so big and tough and smart that you wouldn’t ever do anything that bad then you stepped right over that line. These fallen trees also remind me that their is a time for everything. That it doesn’t matter how rich, how poor, how healthy, how sick, how big our house is or how fast our car is that we will all die, but only a few of us will live again in Heaven. How deep are your roots? What will you do with the time you have on this earth?

This also reminds me of the story of David. As a young teenager he conquered the giant Goliath, who thought because he was so big that he was invincible. Then David falls for Bathsheba, who was married to one of his generals. Not only does he get her pregnant but he conspires to get her husband killed to cover it up. The one who is considered to be after God’s heart falls.

I also see trees that have fallen but are still being held up by healthier trees. At first I thought of this as the bad people in our lives who are trying to hold us down. The ones who are trying to pull us down with them as they fall. Then I thought maybe it’s the other way around. Maybe it’s the healthy people that are trying to hold the bad people up. The ones that won’t give up on you, that will use the last of their strength to help you stay alive. I pray you have people in your life that will be like that for you when you fall. Trust me, we all fall at some point. I pray you have people that will guide you back, lift you up, help you get back on the right track.

I also see the dead trees. The ones that are still standing but are totally dead. No leaves. No green at all. Not even the birds will build a nest in them. This reminded me of all the people that are just dead inside. The ones that are wandering aimlessly, the ones that don’t know who they are or what they are doing, the ones who look in the mirror wondering why they are even here. The ones that don’t believe in anything. They are here just to exist. They easily go whichever way the wind blows, not worrying about the consequences of their actions.

Don’t believe for a second though that I don’t see the hundreds of trees that are full of life, growing, providing for others that are around them. It is easy to see the few dead trees and forget all about the good ones. Don’t give up. Keep growing. Keep living. I see you. I appreciate the shade you give, the shelter you provide, the food you provide, the air you give, the beauty you give this world.

What about the one tree in middle of a field? No other trees around but it provides shelter for animals. Protects them from the sun. This reminds me of Jesus, the only one we need to protect us from the harms in this world.

Let me tell you my friends that no matter what kind of tree you are, there is still hope for you. God has put all of us on this earth for a reason. He had His own son, Jesus, put on a tree for us to see that He died for all of our sins. We can be free. We are the Amazon, Borneo or the Boreal Forests. Millions of us all together, helping each other, providing shade and warmth, shielding others from the wind and rain, providing homes for others to find their way, giving out our fruits, our time, our wisdom of living many years. Yet there are others in this world that are trying to cut us down, plow through our lives, destroy our way of living to benefit themselves. They have no regard for the community we have built over many years of growing together. They just want to take us away for their own gains regardless of the consequences. They don’t care about the future, they want what they want now. We must stand strong. Stand together. Help others. Lift them up, show the dead inside the way to be alive in Christ.

Borneo Rainforest – 

Amazon Rainforest – 

Boreal Forest – 

Maybe the real reason for global warming? There is hope. There is a net gain of forests in parts of the world. 

Even though Christianity has declined in America, it is increasing in Africa and China. There will also be a time when Christianity will rebound in America. It is up to us to plant the seeds for the next generation to grow.

Oh, and for the question. Yes, God hears the sound when a tree falls. He hears and he weeps when one of His people choose to fall instead of live in His light. God hears.

The Giving Tree story – 

Planting Trees by Andrew Peterson – 

The Giving Tree by The Plain White T’s – 

Where The Trees Stand Still by Bebo Norman – 

Family Tree by Aaron Watson – 

The Shade Of Poison Trees by Dashboard Confessional – 

My Roots Go Deeper by Alathea – 

Trees by Twenty One Pilots – 

Shelter From The Storm by Bob Dylan – 

Big Yellow Taxi by Counting Crows (since I already used the Joni Mitchell original in another post) – 

A Thousand Trees by Stereophonics – 

The Trees by Rush –