(Barbara Walters once asked a guest that same thing....this essay is nothing like her question! (LOL))
The California Redwood Trees are amazing natural phenomena! They are the tallest and oldest trees in the world, ranging from 1200-1900 years old and over 370 feet in height! Officially a part of the Sequioa (or cypress family), these big old trees survive in all kinds of climates from extreme heat to rains.
The areas surrounding these Redwood forests are full of all kind of fauna and animals which somehow co-exist together. The foliage around the base are full of all kinds of natural mushrooms, ferns and mosses. They reproduce themselves from seeds, of course, and also from falling branches which just sprout up into new trees!
Redwoods are also called 'sempervirens' or Evergreens and get this - they always grow in a straight line! I was fortunate enough to walk INSIDE a piece of a Redwood log yesterday, that was built into this couple's house!!! The log is over 1900 years old and solid enough to hold the bedroom, living quarters and kitchen of this couple. It is obviously not their full time house, but what a beautifully unique 'abode'!
Most of us may never see a Redwood tree in person, so this was a delight. The fibers, the texture of the wood and the amazement of being inside an almost 2000 year old log which could have been around when Christ walked the earth boggles the mind.
There are two distinctive traits this tree shares with how we should live as Christians.
First of all the tree is called "sempervirens"- that is a rugged sounding name to begin with! Psalm 1 describes the person who walks in the Ways of the Lord - this woman or man is like "a tree planted by water which gives forth FRUIT in its season" (verse 3). This always (semper) green (virens) should be the character trait we strive for ....meaning - we HAVE to bear fruit (see fruits of the Spirit) for the Kingdom, or we are useless to the King!
Secondly, the redwoods grow in a straight line - I love that! Wide is which leads to destruction! Narrow is the pathway for the righteous. We have specific guidelines as Christians which we should never stray from. One of them is belief. There is NO grey area in our belief systems. Jesus said I am the Way, the Truth and the Life (John 14:6), no one...and that means NO ONE (no belief in any other divine so-called systems) can approach Holy God EXCEPT through Jesus Christ as Savior, Master, Friend!
There is a reward for growing and going down the straight and narrow as a Believer or Follower in Christ. Here is what the Bible promises and prophesies in Isaiah 65:22 ESV "...for like the days of a tree, shall the days of My people be, and My chosen shall long enjoy the work of their hands!!!"
Finally - do you know any other Promise, WRITTEN DOWN and confirmed by the Holy Spirit, than this one from verse 22 of Isaiah??!! I don't think so! Therefore think about this majestic tree and then meditate upon what kind of a tree or pillar in your own life and family, you are..and could be...as well as the legacy and fruit you can leave for others to enjoy, generations from now!