One beautiful fall day, I was driving my niece to pre-school. I marveled at the beauty of the fall foliage. We live in what we would describe as “the country.” Depending on the time of year, your drive can be interrupted by wild turkeys, ducks, deer, rabbits, an occasional bear, skunk, or slow moving tractor. There are farms all around us and stretches of wide open land with hills and mountains rolling in the distance. The landscape that morning was breath-taking. The trees were showing off; the colors were explosive, uninhibited displays of leafy glory. And sprinkled among these woodland exhibitionists were evergreen trees.
The evergreens paled in comparison to the maples and oaks. They looked almost drab in their presence. They were the mere background to this multi-hued show. Yet, they stood majestic and seemingly un-phased by the spectacular displays of color around them. There was no hint of competition or inadequacy. Instead they stood with a quiet, confident dignity–unbowed, unapologetic, unashamed.
Perhaps the evergreens were comfortable in their own wood and needles. Perhaps they knew who they were–evergreens and it would be silly for an evergreen to compete with a maple in the category of fall foliage. Perhaps they knew that their season was coming. In a few short weeks, winter would wrestle the leaves off most trees and leave them bare. But the evergreen, the evergreen would remain ever.green. Perhaps the evergreens knew that Christmas was coming and whatever they lacked in bling and dazzle would be given to them when people decorated them lights, and ornaments, and garland.
So on that fall day, those evergreens preached about consistency, avoiding competitiveness, self-knowledge and confidence. On that fall day, they preached about timing and seasons and reminded me of Psalm 1:3 “They are like trees planted by streams of water, which yield their fruit in its season, and their leaves do not wither. In all that they do, they prosper.”