[forthright] A Tree of Life

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From: Forthright Magazine <forthrightmag@...>
Date: Thu, 27 May 2010 05:48:29 -0700 (PDT)
Forthright Magazine 
http://www.forthright.net 
Straight to the Cross

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COLUMN: REALITY CHECK

A Tree of Life
 by Stan Mitchell

"A gentle tongue is a tree of life, but perverseness in
it breaks the spirit" (Proverbs 15:4, ESV).

Do you remember Peter, Paul and Mary singing about the
"Lemon Tree"?

"Lemon tree, so very pretty, 
And the flower of it is sweet 
But the fruit of the poor lemon 
Is impossible to eat!"

If so, congratulations, Oh Ancient One!

Mostly, however, we think of fruit as something that is
good for us, something that heals, not harms.

In most African languages, the word for "tree" is the
same word for "medicine." So much of their lives
surround the benefits of a tree. 

Some trees provide fruit, others shade from the heat 
of the day. There are also many medicines drawn from the 
roots, sap and bark of trees.

Now if this seems strange to you, just remember that
aspirin comes from the willow tree; many of our
medicines, too, come from trees and plants. 

One reason scientists are so anxious to preserve the 
rainforests of the world is because of the likelihood 
of more disease-ridding medicines that would not be 
discovered if the trees was destroyed.

So trees bring life and healing, and so do wise words,
kindly spoken. Like the life-giving tree, they will
heal and bring life to those around us.

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