I encourage you to take the time and look at a tree.  What do you notice? Do you know what type of tree you are looking at? Trees are one of the beauties of creation. We need them for oxygen but they also tell us a story. I wonder what story the tree you are looking at has for us. What wisdom can we get from a tree?

In the base camp of our church community, near and far, we will continue our series: “Let Justice and Peace Flow”. We will explore the book of Ezekiel and the prophecy given.  We will celebrate Rally Sunday as a kickoff to this ministry year!  We will keep the gift of Sabbath, learn sacred stories, sing, pray, reflect, refuel, and revive our sense of reverence!

SCRIPTURE: Ezekiel 31:1-14 (NRSV)

31 In the eleventh year, in the third month, on the first day of the month, the word of the Lord came to me: Mortal, say to Pharaoh king of Egypt and to his hordes:

Whom are you like in your greatness?
    Consider Assyria, a cedar of Lebanon,
with fair branches and forest shade,
    and of great height,
    its top among the clouds.
The waters nourished it;
    the deep made it grow tall,
flowing with its rivers
    around the place it was planted,
sending forth its streams
    to all the trees of the field.
So it towered high
    above all the trees of the field;
its boughs grew large
    and its branches long,
    from abundant water in its shoots.
All the birds of the air
    made their nests in its boughs;
under its branches all the animals of the field
    gave birth to their young,
and in its shade
    all great nations lived.
It was beautiful in its greatness,
    in the length of its branches,
for its roots went down
    to abundant water.
The cedars in the garden of God could not rival it
    nor the fir trees equal its boughs;
the plane trees were as nothing
    compared with its branches;
no tree in the garden of God
    was like it in beauty.
I made it beautiful
    with its mass of branches,
the envy of all the trees of Eden
    that were in the garden of God.

10 Therefore thus says the Lord God: Because it[a] towered high and set its top among the clouds and its heart was proud of its height, 11 I gave it into the hand of the prince of the nations; he has dealt with it as its wickedness deserves. I have cast it out. 12 Foreigners from the most terrible of the nations have cut it down and left it. On the mountains and in all the valleys its branches have fallen, and its boughs lie broken in all the watercourses of the land, and all the peoples of the earth went away from its shade and left it.

13 On its fallen trunk settle
    all the birds of the air,
and among its boughs lodge
    all the wild animals.

14 All this is in order that no trees by the waters may grow to lofty height or set their tops among the clouds and that no trees that drink water may reach up to them in height.

For all of them are handed over to death,
    to the world below;
along with mortals,
    with those who go down to the Pit.