Winter vs Spring Story
Roots are important.
Did you know that scientists are not 100% sure what happens to tree roots in the winter? Roots are a challenge to study any time because they are underground, in the dark and can grow through so many hard to breach substances. Add in snow and frozen earth and you have a nearly impenetrable surface between you and your desired information.
Scientists have adapted of course. They have grown trees in clear containers, painstakingly excavated in less than ideal circumstances and taken advantage of modern technology to get a glimpse of life underground. And while they don’t all agree on what exactly happens during the winter they do seem to be in agreement about one thing- winter is extremely important for strong roots in many trees. The period where the roots are resting but ready to work is called “winter quiescence.” It allows the trees expand their roots systems to search for new sources of nutrients and water (source ).
I think human beings have roots too. As I watch my sister and brother-in-law do an amazing job raising my niece and nephew I am seeing some roots take place. I hear “please” and “thank you.” I see kids who share (most of the time) and know how to take turns. I see their love of physical activity and some fruits and vegetables. These things will serve them later in life. They are developing strong roots about who their family is, learning who they are and shaping who they will be.
As an adult my roots have already found many sources I use for nutrients in my life. Some are good and some not so good. I have had roots that went to rotten sources that ruined both my physical and emotional well being. But I have also had roots that dug deep into veins of love, faith, music and beauty. As I mature I try to starve those rotten roots until they whither and die while strengthening those good sources, which in turn will help me strengthen others.
In 4th grade we had to memorize Psalms 1 and it is still one of my favorite passages committed to memory. Verses 2 and 3 have always stuck out to me:
“(Blessed is the man) whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither….”
When I am having a Winter season in my life there is nothing that feels good. The hard earth is not welcoming, the dull sunshine is not warming and the ice is not soothing. Everything seems so still in the winter- dead on the surface. But there is movement. Underground in the dark, beneath all that snow my roots are getting deeper and deeper. Preparing me for spring. So that when that hurricane comes my roots with be strong. So that when the heat of a summer sun scorches me I will have good resources to keep me cool. So that I can grow into a tall beautiful tree for the enjoyment of others and myself.
So if you are in a season of winter right now hang on. Turn it into a “winter quiescence.” Dig deep and find those sources that build you up. Spring is on the way.
I know this post is a bit unusual for me. I have joined a writer’s group in an effort to be a better blogger. This was our first assignment. I wanted to share with you some of the other writers and the posts they wrote on the same subject. While I have read all of their posts remember they are theirs- I don’t necessarily agree with everything they say or express. Just like some of them won’t with me. We are just growing together.