Good Morning, God!
I have loved the shape of the Monterey pine ever since I tried to paint them in high school art classes. There is something about their sideways outreach and inky darkness that pleases me. Native to California, they live on or near the coast, mostly between San Francisco and Santa Barbara.
In their own way, they are as iconic as the sequoia. And much to my surprise, God, they are like the sequoia in another way. They both have closed cones that seem to require fire to release their seeds. The article I linked to up above goes on to trace their distribution through geologic time. Imagine! Their cones were found in the La Brea Tar Pits.
Aah, God, we are such fleeting creatures. As I stood next to — touched even — an unnamed sequoia I thought about what it would be like to live for 2,000 years. We have, if lucky, 100 years. And I am setting aside for now the awesome concept of Life Eternal — or is that a Life Outside of Time? I know, God, that I have MANY TIMES complained to You — that my species isn’t further along. We struggle. We have HARD choices. And, if I am typical, I mostly IGNORE the choices I am given.
And, yet, I have the nerve to complain! Such Chutzpah! It comes to me, that perhaps, our species like these trees REQUIRE FIRE to release our “seeds.” Thank YOU, God, for this incredible GIFT OF LIFE! Help me to SEE my Choices and step forth with COURAGE into the FIRES of LIFE. THIS life, right NOW!