Monday, October 20, 2014

The Mango Tree

There was a king who wanted to discourage his four sons from making rash judgments.  At his command, the eldest son made a winter journey to see a mango tree across the valley.  When spring came, the next oldest was sent on the same journey. Summer followed, and the king sent his third son.  After the youngest made his visit to the mango tree in the autumn, the king called them together and asked each son to describe the tree.
The first son said it looked like an ugly, old stump.  The second disagreed, describing it as lovely - large and green.  The third son declared its blossoms were as beautiful as roses. The fourth son said that they were all wrong.  To him it was a tree filled with fruit - luscious, juicy fruit, like pears.  
"Well, each of you is right," the old king said. Seeing the puzzled look in their eyes, the king went on to explain. "You see, each of you saw the mango tree in a different season; thus you all correctly described what you saw.  The lesson," said the king, "is to withhold your judgment until you have seen the tree in all its seasons." Like the mango tree, our lives go through seasons.  Some life-seasons seem barren and unfruitful.  During these times of unproductiveness and obscurity we may be tempted to judge our lives as failures.  Family and job responsibilities may frustrate us from reaching career and education goals.  But we must withhold judgment until we have passed through all of life's seasons.  All four seasons of a tree are necessary.  The lonely months of winter prepare it for the fruitfulness of  summer.  So do not lose  heart.
The season of fruitfulness will come to us just as it comes to the tree. The Scripture says, "To every thing there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to reap; ... a time to gain and a time to lose (Ecclesiastes 3:1,6)

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