Human Bonsai

19 07 2013

One of the things I talk about in my book, Lessons by Heart, Β is a bush that used to grow in my yard. We called him, “Hairy.” When you look at his photos, you’ll see why. (If you want an enlarged view, click on a photo.)

Several years ago the Lord showed me how various plants in my yard declare His glory. It was amazing – I’d never really thought about this truth before. Then we got to the New Zealand Tea Tree near the front door.

I sensed Him say, “Tami, I meant for that bush to grow along the ground.”

“Yes, I know,” I replied, “but I’ve seen similar plants that were beautiful trees.”

New Zealand Tea Tree

(What I had in mind)

“How’d that work out for you?” He asked.

“Not so hot, as You can see.”

God lovingly used that tree to teach me about people. You see, He’d watched me stake up, wire branches, and prune Hairy in an effort to get my “horizontalis” variety to stand upright and be what I envisioned for my bush.

I do this with people, too. I push them around, put them in awkward stances, and try to trim off the parts of them that don’t fit my image of what they “could” be.

The problem with my plan is that it’s not my job. God has a design in mind for each and every person on the planet, and it is not up to me to define them.

These pictures show what I ended up with…Hairy looks like “Cousin It” (from the Addams Family TV show) on a very bad hair day!

Hairy from the front door

(What I “created”)

The Lord used my feeble attempts at Bonsai to teach me that if He allowed me to change people into what I wanted them to be, they would end up very much like Hairy.

One glance at his pictures, and you can see why I decided to give up my self-assigned position as a “humaniculturalist” (a horticulturalist for people).

Hairy from the street

(A different angle doesn’t help!)

Having Hairy as an object lesson right outside my front door was a wonderful reminder. I would look at him, then think about a possible “project person” – someone I thought I should “shape up,” shake my head and say, “Never mind!”

Toward the end of his life, I had to prop him up with a shovel to keep Hairy from falling over. It was a sad state of affairs!

Poor Hairy was so ugly despite ten years of futile, albeit diligent labor that I finally gave up and cut him down. He lives with Jesus now. πŸ˜‰

What happened to my hair?

(“What happened to my hair??)

I miss my old friend!

Oh, the things we can learn from everyday living, if we have eyes to see, and ears to hear the Lord!

(Some of you’ve already seen Hairy’s story, but most missed his page on the menu. His is such a fun story that I decided to give him a little more publicity!)

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32 responses

19 07 2013
melanie jean juneau

I see we learned the same lessons

19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

Are you my twin from another mother? Sometimes I wonder. πŸ˜‰

\o/

19 07 2013
melanie jean juneau

it is called SOUL sisters

19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

Oh, I usually refer to them as “kindred spirits.” πŸ™‚

\o/

19 07 2013
melanie jean juneau

yes that IS my term too

19 07 2013
19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

(PS I’ve been “studying” you. It’s been fun to learn that our theology is very similar…and that Jesus is central to us both.) πŸ˜‰

19 07 2013
melanie jean juneau

good job, sis

19 07 2013
melanie jean juneau

I am a convert to Catholicism, raised Presbyterian, conversion experience with a lovely missionary, joined a Jesus People Church, baptized in the Spirit, bevame a speaking in tongues, Charismatic Catholic..not by choice. God put Mary in my heart while my mind was a horrified protestant!

19 07 2013
Elizabeth Yalian

Good story Tami! As the Bible says, it’s best to leave the pruning to God, though we believe we should give Him a hand! πŸ™‚

19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

πŸ™‚

\o/

19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

Thank you for posting the 2,000th comment, Elizabeth! You should get a prize or something. Umm…how about an extra big hug when we get to heaven?? πŸ˜‰

\o/

19 07 2013
Elizabeth Yalian

I’m in!
Congratulations! Wow! 2000! Praise God! He has expanded your territory!

19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

God is indeed expanding my territory. LBH is currently being read in 50 countries, and has had over 9,000 views to date. I’m astonished and humbled. The posts I think are lame end up being the most popular…go figure!

I’m so glad you’re part of my “tribe” her in Blogtopia. You’re such an asset and encouragement to me.

\o/

20 07 2013
Elizabeth Yalian

Your reaching people, touching hearts! God will continue to reach out through you because your heart is to share His message.

Ditto on encouragement and asset! πŸ™‚

20 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

πŸ™‚

\o/

19 07 2013
inthepottershands988

At the times I’ve pruned real plants, I sometimes came away with pruning too much. I can really go to town pruning, which is why it’s good for me not to prune people. “Step away from the pruning shears,” says God to me. Love this post, Tami! πŸ™‚

19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

God asked me to give mine to Him, and leave them there!

I can make a royal mess with them!!! πŸ™‚

\o/

19 07 2013
inthepottershands988

heehee! Same here!

19 07 2013
Peg

Thanks for the delightful, and convicting parable, Tami! πŸ™‚

19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

You’re welcome!

\o/

19 07 2013
kingintraining

Aww shame, Hairy grew on me reading this post, I thought he was rather cute! I agree with Heidi – time to throw my human pruning shears away! *gulp*

19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

I hate to admit it, but he grew on me, too. I hated to take him out, but when I had to prop him up with a shovel, I knew it was time! πŸ™‚

\o/

19 07 2013
Especially Made

I did miss this one … Glad you posted it!

19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

πŸ™‚

\o/

19 07 2013
cshowers

Awesome parable, Tami. Since I don’t do anything with plants (other than kill them) πŸ˜‰ the Lord taught me the same lesson as I tried to mold my husband into the man I thought he should be, in a different way.Instead if giving me a “Hairy”, the Lord spoke to my heart one day and informed me that I am a woman, not Holy Spirit, and onlu He is capable of changing hearts ad lives, and since I was unable to mold myself into the image of God, what made me think I could mold others into His image?

Thanks for sharing this powerful message and reminding me of what the Lord spoke to me several years ago. God blless you, my beloved friend!

Love,
Cheryl

19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

You’re welcome!

\o/

19 07 2013
Heidi Viars

Oh boy, Tami, I am sensing conviction … I think I need to put the (human) pruning sheers away … and give that job back to the Master Gardener! … A wonderful reminder for me today … Blessings to you!

19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

πŸ™‚

\o/

19 07 2013
Pure Glory

Enjoyed your “Hairy” story. God always has the best way to grow people or bushes but like you, I often can’t resist trying my hand at it. Oh, what happens to our best plans!

19 07 2013
lessonsbyheart

For me, nothing good, I assure you. πŸ™‚

\o/

19 07 2013
Pure Glory

πŸ™‚

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