I have two dogwood trees in my yard; one on the side of my house next to the garage and the other in the front yard near the street. I was thinking about cutting them down earlier this year and replacing them with something new. Why? Because for the past three years neither of them blossomed. The entire point of having a dogwood tree is to see it blossom!
As I think about this, I am reminded about a parable from Jesus:
“A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. And he said to the vinedresser, ‘Look, for three years now I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and I find none. Cut it down. Why should it use up the ground?’ And he answered him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and put on manure. Then if it should bear fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.’” (Luke 13:6-9).
In this parable, Jesus is the vinedresser and we are the tree. Just as the vinedresser exhibits patience, mercy, and great care, Jesus treats us in the same manner. What others might see as hopeless; he sees as something with potential. When others want to give up, He says, “Let’s give it another try!” That is how he sees you, me, and the people around us. He is a God of incredible grace!
By the way, I forgot to cut down my dogwood. I am glad I didn’t… they bloomed this year.