I’m talking about family trees – you know, the ones that grow every which direction with funky branches, odd shaped leaves and often a few nuts.
How is yours holding up? Have you bought into Ancestry.com yet? Do you know if your ancestors were honorable people, or not? Were they captains of the Mayflower, or of the Titanic? There’s not really a lot you can do about it. You have enough work to do to keep your own family tree solid.
Our family tree was hit by lightning, which took out one of our branches and shook the stability of the whole tree. And since then, Ron and I have been working hard on strengthening our root system. Hopefully, your tree won’t ever be exposed to such a hard hit. But we all know, strong wind, disease, drought, too much rain, too much snow and too much weight can cause damage. And does.
Neither Ron nor I are professed arborists. But we recognize the value of keeping our family tree strong. It takes lots of work! It takes time to check out the branches, vision to be able to stand back and observe ‘tilt,’ knowledge to correct it, and willingness to prune. Every tree is held together by the root system. Because sure as sunlight, there will be intense heat, rain, snow, wind, storms and disease to fight. Roots allow you to bend, not break.
A strong root system will hold, so your branches can shoot out in many different directions, growing stronger in difficult situations. We encourage our kids to express themselves, to reach out to new territory, to offer themselves as comfortable perches and feeding grounds to the fearful and hungry. To provide shelter.
And mom and dad — you are the lifeline. Lead by example. Take care of your family tree and especially the root system. So when you take a hit, others may look at you and say: that tree survived regardless of the elements. So it must be possible. Grow your family strong!