We planted a red bud tree in our backyard years ago and every spring I can’t wait for it to blossom. It had grown tall, and this year looks gangly with bare, flowerless limbs near the bottom. The branches near the top have some flowers, but they are sparse and remind me of the frailty of life. The tree had its day, glorious in its fuchsia flowers and black trunk, but like me it is in its last days, time has taken a toll on its strength. In front of it is a pear tree in the prime of its life. Every twig is covered with white blossoms fit for a bridal bouquet. Its branches sway in the breeze, blocking my view of the redbud, oblivious that its time too will end. As I walk out to visit my old joy and beauty, I see promises of the pods it will drop in the fall. My heart swells at the promise of new life that will come after the axe falls and it’s gone. Hope arises at the prospect of new life to come in those who come after me, as the seeds I’ve planted mature and blossom.

“But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it who indeed bears fruit…” Matthew 13:23