Planting Trees and Tulips

Tulips and toddlers and attempted theology in practice

12/21/20231 min read

Standing in the middle of our Michigan house, I realize I have not the faintest idea of where to begin packing. Should I start with the bathroom cupboards, or the bedroom closets? Now where are the cardboard boxes? And do we even have any packing tape!

So instead, I sit down to pray and read the Word. Oh dear, now my toddler is awake from her nap.

As our sweet girl sits at the kitchen counter, munching on her cheese-stick, I turn on some worship music and sigh that I don’t know how ever the packing is going to get done, let alone in three weeks! Internal dramatic feeling: the world is ending.

And then I remember something my dear friend, Martin Luther, once answered when he was asked “What would you do if you knew the world was ending tomorrow?” He replied, “I would plant a tree.”

The practical theology of New Creation in practice: plant a tree. What a bizarre answer, but brilliant! Bold. And full of faith.

This world is not our home. I am only passing through. And yet we are given the promise that nothing in this life is wasted. Today matters for eternity. Even these earthly bodies come with us, though dazzlingly transformed. Martin Luther’s pithy response underlines in bold the hope of that new creation.

So we put on our boots and jackets. Grabbing my gardening shovel, A and I went in the yard. And while not as substantial as trees, we planted tulips.

Whether Lansing, Michigan or Greenville, South Carolina… this is my Father’s World. And we eagerly press us, expectant of His New Creation.

Come Lord Jesus, come.