The Believer Tree

The Believer Tree

Sunday, September 23, 2018
| Psalm 1

More than 60,000 species of trees inhabit the Earth. What kind of tree does the psalmist describe?

We love trees. They do so much.

They provide shade. They often bear fruits or nuts. They add oxygen to the air. Their wood is fuel for fires or lumber for shelter. They give protection from wind. Their foliage and roots prevent erosion. They are beautiful in shape, and virtually infinite in variety.

Property is more valuable with trees than without trees.

The souls of poets have been moved by trees. Most famously, Joyce Kilmer (who died in the Great War 100 years ago this past July) wrote an ode to a tree which includes the words, “I think that I shall never see a poem as lovely as a tree … / A tree that looks at God all day, / And lifts her leafy arms to pray; … / Poems are made by fools like me, / But only God can make a tree.”

Ogden Nash parodied this poem, writing, “I think I shall never see / a billboard as lovely as a tree. / Indeed, unless the billboards fall, / I shall never see a tree at all.”

In 2007, students from Shanghai began a...

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