It is no secret that I have long been an admirer of trees. All different kinds of trees. I love them.
When I was a little girl, we had a lone tree in the parkway between the street and sidewalk in the front yard of our house. Because it was a new subdivision, my father was taller than the tree! However, I had a taste of big trees in the Forest Preserves that are sprinkled around the Chicago area. There you can rest in the shade of old trees, have picnics and play in the cool provided by the tall trees.
There have been quite a number of trees that we have seen in our travels, many of them blending into the picture of one vast canvass of green.
However, there have been some trees that are unique and which have made a mark on my memory.
The Octopus Tree is a Sitka spruce. According to information about the tree provided by the Friends of the Cape Meares Lighthouse and Wildlife Refuge, the tree measures more than 46 feet in circumference and has no central trunk. Instead, limbs extend horizontally from the base as much as 16 feet before turning upward. It is 105 feet tall and is estimated to be 250 to 300 years old.
This is the base of the Octopus Tree.
Another beautiful tree we encountered was far from the Oregon Octopus Tree. It was in Mississippi at Beauvoir, the home of Jefferson Davis in Biloxi, Mississippi.
It is a live oak, several hundreds of years old, and it branches out over the sidewalk so that you can walk beneath it with limbs extending on both sides of you.
The lady at the gift shop said that there was a legend associated with this tree, specifically that it was called a Friendship Tree and the legend was as follows: “I am called the Friendship Oak. Those who enter my shadow will remain friends through all their lifetime.” Of course, we had to stand beneath its limbs with that legend upon our minds!
Another tree we found exceedingly beautiful is the ancient tree at the Mission San Jose in San Antonio, Texas.
The ancient tree is on the mission grounds and it is another beautiful example of our Lord’s creation.
Standing beneath the branches of these magnificent trees reminds me of Scripture:
Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.
Father, May I be found to be wise, one who delights in the law of my God. May I be found to be as a tree planted by streams of water, so that I can yield much fruit for my Savior and so that my leaf, my witness, will not fade as time goes by. I pray that I will prosper, not for myself, but to the glory and honor of my God and Father, and for the glory of my Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.