When we moved to this house 11 years ago, the ficus, as Brazilians call it, was just a bush.

We didn’t know it would grow into a large tree and tear up our entrance way to the house and the carport. We have a pic of Leila beside the little bush (will try to scan it later), when she was, at that age, larger than it. Here it was Thursday.

Yesterday, after months of tangling with the city bureaucracy (which I won’t even go into), they finally sent out a team and cut it down. It was a beautiful tree, made a wonderful shade, and neighbors shamelessly parked underneath it. It also kept our carport filled with debris, leaves and limbs. It was sad to see it cut down, nonetheless.

Next to it is/was an ipê amarelo, one of the most beautiful trees when in bloom. (See examples here and here.)  At the moment, it’s scrawny, since the ficus dominated over it, but perhaps it will fill out.

Soon, a new pic with the tree gone and the ipê stretching upward.

One thought on “Gone is the tree

  1. J. Randal Matheny

    11:04 am on 2016-09-14

    Tags: Bible versions ( 34 ), Corollaries ( 80 ), evangelism ( 188 ), Jesus Christ ( 210 ), power ( 13 )

    The most exciting find of all (and it’s not bacon)
    There must have been no greater exclamation among the Jews of the first century than that which Andrew declared to his brother Simon and what Philip told his friend Nathaniel: “We have found the Messiah!” Jn 1.41, 45. One can feel the excitement in those words. The NET Bible rightly ends it with an exclamation point.
    To see with one’s own eyes, after 400 years of waiting by the people of God, the Promised One, the Chosen and Sent, the Redeemer of Israel, the one of whom Moses and the prophets spoke, must have sent surges of adrenaline through the body and bolts of light into the soul.
    News like this must be told. The discovery must soon be shared. Andrew “first found his own brother and told him.” Who best to start with than those of your own family?
    Yes, when we’ve “found” the Messiah, we go “find” those who need to hear the news.
    ¶ I confess to liking typographic fonts too much. I’m judicious in their use, but I’m an avid collector of them in my font catalog. Not just any font, but those that might really be useful. And when I go to choose one for a book or tract, I might just spend an extra bit of time looking through the options.
    ¶ Driving about the city and seeing the yellow ipê trees in their furious glory, I feel a special joy this time of year. I’ve written about them before, several times, but suffice it to say here that these gifts of God are strong emotional pick-me-ups. Springtime in Brazil is a burst of color.
    ¶ The first public mention: I’ll teach a class in February at the FHU Lectureship. If you’re in the area around that time, please come and test your patience with me for an hour. More on that later.
    ¶ Many are the uses for the free, open-source TiddlyWiki software. Yet another is a digital replacement for Baker’s Textual and Topical Filing System. I’m using it on TiddlySpot.com—sorry to say it’s not publicly available. Similar to it in structure is WiseBible—though I’ll have to move it since the TiddlySpace service will shut down this year, if no one decides to pick it up.
    ¶ A new Bible version will be released next month in Brazil, published by Mundo Cristão. What little I’ve seen looks to be promising, and the publisher is not a fly-by-night group. One might be tempted to tag it YABT: Yet Another Bible Translation, but I’m seldom embarrassed by the richness of multiple versions. I do not consider it, on the whole, a bad thing to have many translations.
    The version is called the Nova Versão Transformadora. To translate it as the “New Transformer Version” makes it sound like the movies.
    ¶ So the culprit all along was sugar and not fat. I could have told you that. My grandparents lived close to 100 cooking everything in bacon grease. Imagine those crooked people speaking evil of bacon! Just goes to show how the verities of man change with the wind—or with greasing the palms. God’s truths never change.
    ¶ At the height of Portugal’s world power, the city of Lisbon was destroyed by an earthquake in 1755. It never recovered its domination of the world. Empires have a habit of crumbling. Superpowers grow weak. Human strength eventually fails. Sometimes it’s a gradual decline; other times it happens abruptly. Causes may be natural (as man defines it) disasters, internal weakness, or external threat.
    We should never think, however, that God is not in the world’s events. He still rules. We may not be able to point to a given event, such as an earthquake or a battle, as a direct intervention of God’s, but we should never doubt his activity upon earth.
    Daniel praised God thus: “God is the one who changes times and eras, who dethrones one king, only to establish another, who grants wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those with insight” Dan 2.21 CEB.
    Jesus reminded Pilate of his precarious position: “You would have no authority over me at all, unless it was given to you from above” Jn 19.11.
    People in authority or who seek power would do well to remember this truth.
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