Monday, November 28, 2005

Pines and Pears

I was sitting at the kitchen table writing in my journal and sipping coffee when I noticed two trees, side by side, on my neighbor's property 40 feet away. I noticed that I could easily see the clear outline of every leaf on the pear tree, but from that distance the pine looked fuzzy and unclear, no matter how much I squinted and tried to focus. It occurred to me that situations (and sometimes people!) are like that too--some are clear and easy to understand; others are less defined and harder to grasp. I that difference inherent in the nature of the tree or in my eyes, or both? The shape of the leaves on the tree (and the personalities of some people and circumstances in some situations) have something to do with how easy they are to see; but also the ability of my own eyes (as well as the limitations caused by being at such a distance) have something to do with hindering or helping my own understanding.

The idea was helpful to me because I can sometimes work so hard at trying to understand situations that are beyond my ability to grasp--I keep working at it like a child wiggling a loose tooth. But usually I just have to put it all back in God's hands and say, "I know you'll give me more understanding about this when and if I should have it, but for now, it's beyond me. I just have to leave it with you."

And you know what? That works a lot better than squinting. :)

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