Yesterday I was out watering my plants and when I came around to watering the Japanese Maple Tree I noticed that it had some what detached itself from the stick it was connected to. In the beginning stages of growing a tree sometimes a stick is attached to the tree to keep it from growing crooked and until it is strong enough to stand on it’s own. I planted the tree almost a year ago and I honestly didn’t think that it was going to make it because it wasn’t producing anymore leaves and the leaves that remained were falling off. Even the branches were dying on it. I kept watering it every other day and prayed that the roots would have settled and were strong enough to make it through the winter. I kept checking to see if there were any changes and there wasn’t anything. By spring it flourished and the leaves were beautiful as it stood looking healthy and strong. As I looked closer at the tree the stick that was attached had snapped in half and some of the strings had come a loose. That let me know that the tree had grown and it was strong enough to stand on it’s own. So I removed the string and the stick. I stood there for a moment just to make sure that it was able to stand on it’s own and sure enough it was. That made me smile. I was glad that I didn’t do what I had initally started to do which was to up root it and throw it away. Just because you don’t see any evidence of life on the surface doesn’t mean that their isn’t anything growing underneath the soil. Sometime’s the greatest things are produced in a dark place. Give it some time to be produced. Don’t give up on it just yet. God will send people and things in ours lives to help us along the way, but if we aren’t careful they can become a crutch. If we continue to use our crutches how will we know what we can do on our own. Crutches can become a handicap when they are used past their season and we become so depended on it that we think that we need it survive. At times God will remove the things that we have become depended on to hold us up (crutches) so that we can see just how strong we really are. Your greatest strength is sometimes found when you are finally able to stand on your own.