Do you know what the first two pictures are showing? They are chestnuts, fallen from a neighborhood tree. They start out in these green prickly pods, then open to reveal the nut. There is one very special chestnut tree in Amsterdam that has been a sign of hope to millions of people worldwide. It is referred to as The Anne Frank Tree. While Anne and the others were hiding, she was never able to go outside, but when she went to the attic and looked up, this was the only bit of nature she saw. Here is just a part of what she wrote about that tree in her diary "From my favorite spot on the floor I look up at the blue sky and the bare chestnut tree...as long as this exists, and I may live to see it, I cannot be unhappy." This tree was her one sign of hope, and today it fell. It had been sick since 1993 and almost half it's wood had rotted. Many legal battles ensued, with people fighting the decision to cut it down. The tree defenders finally won, and a steel support frame was made to keep the tree from falling. But fall it did, today. Even with steel supports. No one knows why, but the weather had been very bad. There is a time for everything, and when God means for our time to go, no efforts of man or steel can stop it. A symbol of hope for many is gone today, but there is a greater hope with us all, one that abides and is stronger than steel.
"We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield. In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name. May your unfailing love rest upon us, O Lord, even as we put our hope in you." Psalm 33:20,22
Note on the pictures: First two taken by me. Third and fourth from the web. The fourth is looking out from Anne's room at how she saw the tree. Last picture is the fallen tree, picture taken by me from the T.V. news tonight.