Wednesday, February 11, 2009

In early February 1941 a six and a half month old child was separated from his parents because of his mother’s ill health. His grandmother, aunts and cousins were loaded on to an evacuation ship that offered to take them away from a war torn city just about to fall to the enemy.

The order of embarkation was by way of surname - alphabetically. His family members surnames were Webster, Woodford, and Walters. Somehow he was taken aboard ship by loving arms and all got away to safety by the hand of Providence. I was the child. The gratitude I feel today remains immense. The opportunities to encourage others have been many throughout my life, and I am thankful for them.—Grandpa Wal

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Look closely at a tree with the concentration of an ardent admirer and you will be welcomed to a wonderful world of life and purpose. The quiet tree stands undisturbed by the hustle and bustle of life, and when a restless wind blows in its branches, its response is a softly spoken “hush! The loudest noise a tree makes is when a branch is broken or its trunk is felled. Then the sound of a crack or a thud manifests the pain of its loss of life.

We go to trees for shade, to look at trunk and leaf, to watch beautiful birds frolic on its branches, to remind ourselves that life has purpose although fulfillment of that purpose may take generations. So it is that when children, grand children, and generations to come see a tree that an ancestor has planted, it reminds them of the links between generations and the legacy of family traditions that enrich their lives in the present. How grateful we should be for trees, majestic and otherwise, for they have in their being much from which we can learn. –Grandpa Wal