Oh Mr. Redbud

My eyes watch the road. My hands occupy ten and two on the steering wheel. My favorite morning DJs entertain me. I am smooth sailing down the expressway. Suddenly, BAM! A beautiful splash of color catches my eye out the passenger window. My attention immediately turns to this magnificent redbud standing center stage with a backdrop of dead grass and dormant trees. Have you ever had the beauty of nature take your breath away? In that moment, I did.

A week ago, there was no color along my daily route. It was a perfect monochrome winter scene of browns with no sign of life. Now, the redbuds dominate the landscape with their beautiful reddish-pink flowers. I started a game of I spy with myself…I spy a redbud and another and another. I spied over 10 redbuds between the breathtaking moment and my destination. I finished the game. I laughed at myself for getting so energized about a tree. Then, I asked myself why is this tree impacting me so much? There are two reasons.

The redbud represents the beauty of God’s creation. The redbud produces reddish-pinkish flowers first, which tells us that spring has arrived. After months of short days, leafless trees and lots of brown, the redbuds symbolize life, energy and hope. We leave the darkness of winter and move into the excitement of spring. The flowers last a short period until they are replaced by heart-shaped leaves. The leaves carry the spirit of love. Redbuds  symbolize hope and love.

The redbud takes me back to my childhood. I spent countless hours exploring the huge redbud in my backyard. It occupied almost half of our backyard and spread wide rather than tall. My brother and I climbed up, down and all around the limbs. I remember finding the perfect nook to sing a song at the top of my lungs, act out a skit, hide during hide-n-seek or just hangout. It was a place of freedom and fun.  Redbuds symbolize the importance of having a special place to play or get away from life’s hustle and bustle.

As we enter spring, take a moment to recognize the budding and blooming of the trees and flowers. Define how you need to bud or bloom in your life. Take a moment to think about what nature teaches you. Embrace the lesson or lessons. Love the lesson and choose to change. Spring, it’s a new season, a new start, a new hope. Come alive again!

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