I am not sure how it happened. We did some landscaping. We added some rock work and a few trees and plants to our yard. A year later a single branch sprouted from the rocks. Then a second one stretched out of the ground. I wasn’t exactly sure what it was but for two years I watched it grow slowly. Last year it looked like a bush. I thought it was quite lovely as the leaves rustled in the wind. The green added a lovely touch to the corner of our driveway. My neighbor asked me what it was and said it was the most beautiful thing on our street. A strong compliment for something that grew by accident.
The mystery sprout became a tree, so this year I snipped off all the lower branches and it grew with a power I never expected. Taller than me. Much taller than me and well on its way to becoming a large strong tree.
How many times has something happened in life that caused us to unintentionally grow? We didn’t plan it. We may not have wanted it to happen, but it did and caused a growth spurt that we never expected. We grew in strength. Grew in experience. Grew mentally, emotionally, or spiritually.
In school you may have let your grades slip and the consequences were painful. You may not have been able to participate in sports or you may have enjoyed a little summer school time. Learning to be more responsible in the future with your schoolwork and appreciating the benefit of playing your favorite sport was the unintentional growth you gained.
You may have lost someone you love. The pain of grief can be unbearable. Living through, and with, this kind of pain can create growth in powerful ways. Your empathy and compassion for others grows. Your kindness and attention to the simple things in life grows. Your love for the time spent with family and friends grows. With deep pain comes deep (unintentional) growth.
You may have been laid off from a job. The panic of this type of situation causes stress, worry, and loss of confidence. As you search for a new job you begin to realize that you can find success elsewhere. In the future you plan your savings in case this happens again. You learn to be prepared for the unexpected. The learning and growth that comes from a stressful situation leads to confidence and strength. With time you realize it may have been the best thing that ever happened to you. What seemed to be the end of the world opened the door for a new beginning. The most difficult of times can cause the most dramatic growth.
I am not sure how our new tree happened to find us. Maybe a seed was dormant in one of the plants we intentionally planted and with the water and attention it decided to burst into its glory. Maybe it was a seed that blew from a neighbor’s tree swirling and dancing until it nestled into the safety of our rocks. How ever it came to live with us, its accidental growth has been a magical process to watch.
In the same way, our own unintentional growth can be a magical process to experience. We may not understand why it happens to us. It may take years before we fully realize the growth we have experienced because of it. The process may be painful, but as it expands our hearts it can become a beautiful benefit to our lives.
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Pennie’s Life Lesson:
The most difficult of times can cause the most dramatic growth.
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There is a certain magic about where I live both physically and spiritually – on the crossroads of Spirit and Brave.
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