A tree came down in our backyard today. It was a giant Douglas fir, probably 60 feet tall, that loomed over our back deck, shed its needles and cones onto said deck, our roof, and kept grass from growing beneath it. Long before it was 'our' tree, someone had had it limbed and topped, which only made it grow two tops rather than one. And it had every possibility of going down in a bad wind storm with those two heavy tops up in the atmosphere, perhaps straight into our dining room and kitchen, or, worse, into our downhill neighbors bedroom. So it's been on our 'list' of things to deal with for the last six years. Our deck needs replacing, but we felt that the tree needed to come down first.
So today was the day. Three men from Hosanna Tree Service put on quite a show for us this afternoon. We stood watching a man climb straight up the trunk of a doug. fir with only ropes and spiked boots. The other two were on the ground with more ropes (I counted about seven different ropes coiled in our yard at one point), moving limbs as they fell, pulleying up increasingly large chain saws (Note to self: Beve would really like a chain saw--and Christmas is coming!). When most of the larger limbs were filling our backyard, the trunk was sawed into, and we were amazed at the tree-climber and colleagues precise cuts and pulls so that that massive tree fell in the only open space in the yard. Any variation would have destroyed something on our property or the neighbors'. E took photos of the big crash and let me tell you, it was impressive! Maybe she'll let me post them one of these days.
But was perhaps more impressive was the view that opened up before our eyes. For us and our uphill and backyard neighbors. We've always had a view of the water from our front patio, but now we have an equally inpressive view of the mountains in British Columbia from our backyard. We also have more sun in the dining room, more sun on the deck and, best of all, more sun on our ancient apple tree that has produced very little fruit since we moved here.
Though I've never been a fan of cutting down trees, I readily see the good in this. It makes me think of the tall, ugly trees that might be obstructing my view of God. There are so many things in my life I've resisted toppling. I allow them--my attitudes, my actions, my whole self--to just stand there, blocking the beauty beyond, keeping the Light from assisting me in growing fruit; spilling needles and cones from such attitudes and actions all over my life. But like what happened this afternoon, my life is brighter without that tree, the world opens up once I finally allow a chain saw wielded by God Himself, to cut down the old ugly tree that's keeping me from Him.