When I look out my back windows, I see something that I appreciate very much. But before I say what it is, I will say that it's something that I wasn't always happy about.
3 years ago, Ryan and I were waiting anxiously for our new home to be built. After some trees in the backyard were bulldozed, we walked around back to get an idea of what our new yard would be like. We loved that we had some flat yard, and then woods. As we looked around, we saw something that upset us. A lot.
One of the trees right where the grass and woods met was leaning over. Not slightly, mind you, like the leaning tower of Pisa. Oh, no. This tree was at least at a 45 degree angle. The roots on one side were pulled out of the ground, and sticking up. The "top" of the tree was hanging way over into the back yard.
Our first thoughts were ones of slight anger. How dare the builder leave that almost dead tree hanging over into our yard? It's dangerous! Why does everyone else get perfect trees, and we are left with something that we'll probably have to pay hundreds and hundreds of dollars to have removed? The visions we'd had in our head of our perfect new backyard were getting very muddled. It seemed that everyone else had what we wanted. And we were left with the disfigured, problem tree.
It figures, we thought to ourselves.
After we moved in, we took a further look at that tree. It really wasn't dead at all. And not far from the base of the tree, there was another tree stump, perfectly positioned to give support to the big tree, and hold it up. The huge roots that stick out of the ground were alive and well. Ryan thought it was alive and sturdy enough to hold some weight.
So a few weeks later, on Christmas day, we hung a tire horse swing from it. And in the spring, we added a hammock. Because of it's angle, even little kids are able to climb it. Clara started gathering friends to follow her up the tree. Then the girls started sliding down it. It's become a neighborhood favorite. The girls call it their climbing tree.
Honestly, if that tree wasn't there, we wouldn't have a good place for their swing. And the kids wouldn't have a tree that was safe and easy to climb. Of all things, we ended up being........ THANKFUL......... for that tree!
What we thought was so terrible ended up being a blessing. Who would have thought? In the begining, it appeared to us that we were getting a bad deal. But it turns out that what we perceived as being unfair was actually to our benefit.
So when I look out my back windows, I see the climbing tree. And I'm reminded that what may appear to be a disappointment, may actually be a blessing in disguise.
I think life is full of these. If only we could take the time to look at problems with a different perspective, I think we'd be pleasantly surprised. There just may be a silver lining.