A Root Issue

Before and ... ... after.Some tasks are time-consuming, others are not. Some require concentrated planning and effort, others are better accomplished day by day over a long period. Some are hard, some are easy. Some are indoors, some are outdoors.  Some bring about visible changes that you love to look back on, others tend to be less Older folks will appreciate having a handrail here in the near future!appreciated.

One job that came up was particularly time-consuming, and less visibly-appreciable. However, the longer it was put off the more problematic it would become. The job was … digging up a tree–two trees actually.

Trees of Heaven have little practical connection with their name; almost a counterpart to the betel nut tree in Taiwan; a weed disguised as a tree. This was the largest one. It’s roots grow long and break easily. Thus even when it is uprooted the risk remains that a new tree will sprout from one small root left behind. Thoroughness is required.

As I worked on this project, I knew it would be worth it all in the end because a few days Here you can see the root ball and the shorter roots. labor now was going to save many days later. I also thought about the root of bitterness. It too requires great pains to uproot. May I encourage you to uproot that evil tree with thoroughness whatever the cost.

When the task was completed to my satisfaction I snapped a couple pictures before filling in the holes, gathering the tools and leaving the woods for the last time. Back at the house, no beautiful landscaping could be seen–but things were different. There was simply the peace of knowing that no longer did the deceptive Tree of Heaven have a root. It had been taken care of.


Knowing what factors will diminish

the effectiveness of my work or words

if neglected.


  1. Joshua August 22, 2009 at 4:38 pm #

    Donald – I appreciate you taking the time to draw such timely truths from every day activities. That encourages me greatly!

  2. Daniel August 24, 2009 at 7:37 am #

    That small, insignificant-looking brick wall has totally transformed the front view of our house. Thank you Donald!

  3. Jenny Wilkes August 24, 2009 at 4:46 pm #

    Nice work on the brick edging around the garden bed Donald!
    Esther mentioned to me at the FEW conference that you had done this and I have looked forward to seeing it ever since.
    It brings such nice definition to the yard and garden.

  4. Michael August 25, 2009 at 11:14 am #

    Thank you so much Donald! It is wonderful to have one more skilled laborer here to “dig into” projects that I have not been able to get to! You are quick to understand what needs done, you take off with it, and pay attention to details. Thanks for doing what you do “as unto the Lord and not unto men”.

  5. Matthew August 26, 2009 at 4:18 pm #

    Why ever were they called Heavenly Trees? They seem to represent so much more of the opposite. Maybe there supposed to make us hope for heaven. Excellent post Donald your tenacity is motivating, especially when I remember the heavenly trees on our own property.

  6. Donald August 27, 2009 at 6:20 am #

    Don’t know Matthew! but I was thinking about the same thing and I think you’re right: it reminds me of the saying “Some things make this world a better place in which to live; and other things make this world a better place from which to leave”!

  7. Amanda August 28, 2009 at 8:02 am #

    A clear conscience and the knowledge of a job well done are both blessings from God! Great analogy, Donald!

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