Today is December 3rd and a memorable day in my house. Twenty-three years ago on this day the Lord thought it would be quite an adventure to have my daughter born three and a half weeks earlier that expected. Meredith was supposed to be a Christmas Eve baby and all of our family members with December birthdays warned us about the pitfalls that came along with it. Everyone said that she would never have a regular birthday. All of her presents would most likely be wrapped in Christmas paper if she even received a birthday gift.
Just like any new mother, I wanted to truly commemorate the birth of my daughter. There were several different things that I mulled over but for some reason it just seemed fitting to plant a tree the same year she was born and watch it grow. After much research we settled on planting a Yoshino Flowering Cherry Tree. The blooms would a delicate pink just like my precious daughter. The tree was nurtured and fertilized. We did everything that you would do to a tree to build a healthy foundation for future growth and maximum bloom potential.
Of course the first year that it was in the ground there were no blooms. Zero. We researched it and it appeared to be somewhat normal. Much to our surprise after one year it had one bloom and boy was it the most beautiful bud you have ever seen in your entire life. We were so proud. Year two rolled around and we knew it would be the year that wowed us. It had two blooms the entire year but they were breathtaking.
Year three was upon us and our bouncing baby girl was turning three as well. We felt confident that this would be our year to wow the entire town with the loads of blooms. The tree mesmerized us with three healthy flowers. I truly wish that I could tell you that I was exaggerating for literary purposes but I cannot. What I can tell you is that year four, five, six and seven did not disappoint us. Each year it respectively gained one bloom. As humor would have it, when we moved from Winnfield to Natchitoches it had record setting blooms.
I am assuming the pressure to perform and helicopter tree-parenting really took its toll on the precious tree that was planted for the precious baby. The new owner of our old home is very gracious and does mind that I stalk the tree in the springtime just to take a gander at it.
When Meredith’s birthday was approaching I could not help but think about the delicate pink blooms on the special tree that was planted in her honor. As I do every year. But this year was different.
I began to ponder on the infinite wisdom of our loving Heavenly Father and how he picks the day of our birth, ordains our days, orders our steps and even knows the date of our return to him. To take it a little further, I couldn’t help but being wowed knowing that when he created the heavens and earth, he also knew that one day he would create his son and that his son would die for our sins. He knew his son would hang on a cross even though he had committed no wrongs.
Please understand that I dare not compare my daughter’s birth to the birth of Jesus.
When I thought about God watching the new born tree grow that would eventually become a cross that his son would hang on, it literally flooded my soul. Our all knowing, all seeing and all encompassing God knew that one day this tree would be utilized in the most gruesome and painful way. But would eventually give life to all of his children. Did it sadden him to know this tree was growing? Did he watch it grow and check back on its progress or did purposefully pick one that would take thirty-three years to mature?
Some mysteries of the Bible we may never know the answer to but I do know that God gives purpose to every soul that is born and every life that is lived. He chose us to live in such a time as this. My prayer is that you will spend the month of December reflecting on God’s goodness and celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ.
“For thou didst form my inner parts; Thou didst weave me in my mother’s womb. I will give thanks to thee, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are thy works, and my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from thee, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth. Thine eyes have seen my unformed substance; and in thy book they were all written, the days that were ordained for me. When as yet there was not one of them.”
Psalm 139:13- 16