When my family moved we picked a house surrounded by some trees. The trees along one side of the house were pretty interesting.
The branches and wood was far darker than most. The color of the leaves didn’t look like most trees’ leaves either. Rather than being an expected shade of green the leaves were actually a dark red/brown shade, the unusual color of which blended well with the color of the wood.
These dark trees would bear pretty clusters of pinkish flowers in the spring, but I was in love with the larger more impressive flowers of other trees. So I didn’t really pay much attention to those dark trees and neither did anyone else apparently, for the majority of the years we lived there. Although the trees dropped purple balls onto the ground, those seemed more messy than interesting.
One Sabbath we were expecting people to join us for lunch and on the way into the house one person picked up one of those purple balls from the tree and later, to our surprise, proceeded to eat it. Now, it didn’t seem safe to me to eat something from some random tree. Lots of plants grow little fruits and stuff, but that doesn’t mean it won’t kill you, it could be poisonous.
While we wondered at what he had done, he informed us those little purple fruits that strange tree had been growing and dropping to the ground were actually plums. That’s right plums. Although I liked plums, and for years I loved the taste of fresh fruit, we unknowing had not only one but two fruit trees in our own yard bearing little plums hidden away among the identical colored leaves and bark.
I might not have noticed there was even fruit on that tree at all, if it didn’t drop a bunch of it and even so I still didn’t recognize the fruit I rarely had to eat but liked although I had it so close to me. Isn’t it odd in life that sometimes it takes an outside influence to show us the blessings in our lives that are right in front of us? Sometimes we may have a talent that could be used, but we might not consider it because it comes off as odd at first so we don’t evaluation it further. We have something in our life, that we notice but we are scared to take the risk to discover its value.
A few years or so after discovering the benefit of that tree and enjoying its fruit, the tree became sick, some sort of tree fungus or something, and started to die. And the other tree didn’t seem to do as well either. It would have been so much better if we saw the value and had eaten from those trees much sooner.
But as sad as it was that the ability to enjoy so much free fruit was short lived, it would be even sadder if we don’t see the value in the talents and abilities God has given us to serve Him and others and just live and die without really noticing or doing much good. Pray for God to show you what is in your life that could be used by Him to change the world and don’t waste it by letting opportunities drop to the ground unpicked.
Picture originally found here