My Coppiced Faith of Beautiful New Growth

You can also buy your Christmas tree this way.

My Christian faith and coppiced Christmas trees have a lot in common.

Coppicing simplified means you cut a tree down high at first to leave a stump that remains alive. This stump then becomes the source of all future trees to produce again and again with the right management. So when you cut this Christmas tree you aren’t killing a tree.

It looks something like this. This is the book cover of Bravester’s second book.

It also actually looks something like this.

photo credit Geoff McKonly

Read this story about The Pieropan Christmas Tree Farm that only sell coppiced Christmas trees. (Also who the photo credit is owed to.)

My Bravester story is having my heart smashed and not being able to get out of bed and the brave decision to get up again. I have been cut down. Chopped low.

But obviously not low enough because new growth is coming out of me!!!!!!!

I write about this new growth all over Bravester and teach it at my church, Larger Story Church.

There is more truth about coppicing to amaze you with. According to this Smithsonian Magazine article, a single stump can support an older tree and a younger tree at the same time, thereby increasing production.

What I have learned can support me and you at the same time! We are both growing back into new life. Thank you for joining me on this journey. Are you as encouraged as I am?

But wait. There is more. When these older trees are cut high, more sunlight shines into the forest understory which then again creates more life in plants, insects, and reptiles. This increased biodiversity also helps plant life manage climate change better. (I guess our ecosystem needs more insects. I don’t like that.)

My heart is smashed. I’m chopped down yet I’m still alive and growing. Of course, I have my gift of people to help with that! And the world is healing. This is the right “agricultural management.”

My old ways of handling life are broken. I have little choice but to grow anew and lean into this Larger Story God with trust and grow again. This is allowing the sun to reach even deeper instead of being blocked by my big ol’ beautiful top heavy tree of what I used to be. Life is springing up everywhere. Even those insects are basking in the sun.

During the Advent season this passage from Isaiah 11 is often read beginning with verse 1, Out of the stump of David’s family will grow a shoot—yes, a new Branch bearing fruit from the old root.

Now do you see a much deeper meaning of this prophecy?! So much so that you can’t unsee it?

The metaphors here are rich. Metaphors based on actual science.

There are probably more metaphors to be made.

Once again this is true. A broken heart is always a beginning. Pain has a Holy Spirit magic way of making you beautiful. What is happening with these trees is crazily amazingly beautiful. #whattreesteachus

I see it.

I see me in it.

I see God’s larger story in it.

I see hope.

Read the book

A small book about being the people that hurting people need.

“This is the book that I wish I had had for people in my life that have suffered and needed me to be that compassionate friend. This is the book that I wish others in my life had read before they dismissed my pain, or compared it to theirs, or stumbled horribly through trying to lessen my pain because it was actually really about THEM not feeling comfortable with it.”

Order here: