Once upon a time, there were three trees on a hill in the woods. They were discussing their hopes and dreams, when the first tree said, “Someday I hope to be a TREASURE CHEST. I could be filled with gold, or silver, or all kinds of precious gems. I could be decorated with intricate carvings and everyone would see my beauty.”
Then the second tree said, “Someday I would love to be a MIGHTY SHIP, and take kings and queens across the waters and sail to the corners of the world. Everyone will feel safe in me because of the strength of my hull.”
Finally, the third tree said, “I want to grow to be the tallest and straightest tree in the forest. People will see me on top of this when they look up, they’ll think of the God and the Heavens and how close I am to them. I will be the GREATEST TREE OF ALL TIME and people will always remember me.”
(5 second pause)
After a few years of praying that their dreams would come true, a group of woodsmen came upon the trees. One of the woodsmen inspected the first tree and said, “this looks like a strong tree. I think I should be able to sell the wood to a carpenter” and he began cutting it down.
The first tree was happy because he thought perhaps the carpenter would make him into the TREASURE CHEST that he dreamed about becoming.
Another Woodsman came upon the second tree and said, “this looks like a strong tree. I should be able to sell it to the shipyard.”
The second tree was happy because he thought perhaps he was on his way to becoming the MIGHTY SHIP that he always dreamed about becoming.
When the third Woodsman came upon the third tree, the tree was very frightened, because he knew that if they cut him down, his dream would end and not come true. And although this Woodsman had no particular plan for this tree, he cut it down just the same.
Eventually, the first tree arrived at the Carpenter’s. Not having any control over his circumstances, the Carpenter made him into a feed box for animals. A short time later, he was taken to a barn and filled with hay. This was not at all what he had prayed for.
Similarly, the second tree was cut and made into a small fishing boat. His dreams of becoming a mighty ship that carried Kings had also come to an end.
The third tree was cut into large beams and left alone in the dark for many years. And as the years went by the trees, forgot about the dreams they held so dear.
One day, a man and a woman came to a barn. While they were there in the barn, the woman gave birth and the baby was placed in the hay, in the same feed box that was made from the first tree.
The man wished he could have made a crib for the baby, but this manger would have to do. The tree began to feel the importance of this event, and somehow knew that it had held the greatest Treasure of all time.
Years later, a group of men got into the small fishing boat made from the second tree. One of them was tired and went to sleep. While they were on the water, a great storm arose and the tree didn’t think it was strong enough to keep the men safe. The other men awoke the one that was sleeping, and he stood up and said, “Peace, be still” and the storm subsided.
When this happened, the tree realized that it was, in fact, carrying the King of all kings in it’s hull. The King of both Heaven and Earth!
Not long after, someone came and got the third tree, it was carried through the streets as the people mocked the man who was carrying it. When they came to a stop, the man was nailed to the tree and raised into the air to die at the top of a very large hill. When Sunday came the tree realize that it was strong enough to stand at the top of the hill and be as close to God as was possible, because Jesus, the savior of all mankind had been crucified on it.
The moral of this story is that when things don’t seem to be going your way, always know that God has a plan for you. If you place your trust in him, he will give you great gifts and you will be fulfilled.
Each of the trees got what they wanted. Just not in the way they had imagined.
We don’t always know what God’s plans are for us. We just know that his ways are not our ways, but his ways are always best.
Sometimes the heart sees what the eyes cannot.
Trust in the Lord.