Yesterday morning I met the forester for the Grove and asked if he would take me through the Grove and teach me about the flora. He agreed and so after my shift ended, Bob taught me for an hour and a half as we walked around.
There were several trees he showed me that he called “character” trees. These are trees that have faced adversity, survived, and have a story to “tell” about survival. The first he showed me was a maple tree off which the top had been broken about six feet up the trunk many years ago in a storm. Most trees die when this severely damaged, but this tree sent up two new branches which grew parallel toward the sky in search of light. Most branches as close together as these two compete until one wins out, but in this tree the smaller of the branches “leaned” over to support the larger until it became part of the larger branch. Instead of competing it supported. It literally assimilated into the larger branch to strengthen and give life to that branch.
I couldn’t help but think it a good metaphor for marriage where instead of competing with one another we support and become one larger, better branch that can better survive the storms of life. Carl got at good picture of the tree and Bob didn't give the tree a name, so I'm calling it the Wedded Tree.
Last night we went to the Pageant again and enjoyed every minute(again!). There was a large audience last night which included Donny Osmond and family. The anti-Mormon contingency was out it force with microphones and signs. The interesting thing is the talked with a few people who had walked through the antis to get to the Pageant and they remarked on the dark, horrible feelings that came over them while they were passing through but how as soon as they stepped on the Cumorah property the bad feelings immediately washed away in a flood of joy and light. The anti-Mormons don’t realize how they are helping people to recognize the truth!