There is a Cherry tree in our back yard. And at this time of year, the tree blooms with beautiful white flowers that fill our living room window. And we admire our cherry tree for her beauty. And yet, if we look closely, unless her white blossoms fall away, the cherries cannot come forth. Unless she lets go of that which we admire so much, her nourishing fruit cannot be given to the world.
Like the tree, every human spirit also longs to be fruitful, to give nourishing life to others. This is because at our core, our highest destiny is to serve others, to serve new life with creative love. This means that we are called not only to develop higher capacities, beautiful flower petals in our inner being, but like the tree to learn to let them go as something for ourselves, something to be admired, transforming them into fruit that can serve the community.
And yet, so often we find that we love ourselves in our work more than we love the work itself and the others it serves. So often we would secretly rather others recognized us for our advanced spiritual petals rather than serve the world. So often our motivation for development is to blossom forth a preferred self that others respect, honour and glorify, rather than loose ourselves to find ourselves. For, dear friends, in the end, self love becomes the mightiest enemy of our true destiny.
In our gospel today (Jn 3), Christ calls us into a new kind of community. He calls us to become a part of a community of souls that are born again, born again into true life. He tells us that what we are today, like the blossoms of the cherry tree, must drop away, transforming into fruit, the fruit of selfless love. For it is only this life giving love flowing between free human spirits that creates this new community. May we become this harvest. May we enter this kingdom of God.
This contemplation by Rev. Evans was inspired by The Cherry Tree and being Born Again.