Jona’s tree in front of our house

After a day of hard work, we finally were able to pull out two trees besides the church. The church members had been talking about it for a while, but the concrete around the trees prevented us from action. Now two, actually beautiful trees were laying in the ground. Without thoroughly considering, I decided that we should move the trees to a field in front of our house, it would be ashame if they would die. With an starting headache of working in the hot sun for several hours, we drove the trees to our house, dug some extra holes in the ground and put the trees in place.

A few hours later…

Satisfied but also tired I heard my wife talking to our direct neighbors. They were talking with kind words, but made it very clear that these trees could not be planted in that place. We did not own that place, the roots would go too deep to easily remove the trees if needed …

Irritated and without saying much I walked to the trees and pulled them down, before I went straight back into our house.

Of course I knew I overreacted, of course I knew I had left the neighbors feeling bad about the situation and inside the house I prayed a simple prayer to ask God to calm my heart. I was most likely too tired to control those basic emotions.

That evening …

My wife, our Home school teacher and I were talking about the trees and were reminded of Jona’s tree. The issue that day was not just about being in a bad mood or about the feeling that the neighbors were overconcerned about the trees. It was about what I was concerned about. Was I just as passionate about seeing our neighbors come to know Christ as I was about two trees in front of our house?

Some people have asked how to pray for missions or missionaries. Looking at this story, please pray for an ongoing passion for the people around us who do not yet know Christ.


In case some of you were wondering. My wife baked some nice cakes and I went to give those to the neighbors and said sorry for behavior – they accepted the cake, it seems they accepted my apologies too.

One Reply to “Jona’s tree in front of our house”

  1. Great sharing! Gives a good flavour of daily life in the Isaan region and the daily struggles of “pilgrims” that lots of people will be able to relate to..!

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