Birch Bark Beauty



Birch Bark Beauty


Memories embossed

in paper layers

as life’s waves

rise and fall

while weddings

and funeral processions

march past

your peeling wall


You’ve borne battles well

leaving hints

of storms wrought

and wounds buried

under scars with

lessons you’ve

been taught


You’re a totem

for passersby

to read living lines of history

and to admire

one who has lived life

so completely.



Ian suggested I take pictures of this birch tree that resides on the lawn of our neighborhood church.  It is right beside the sidewalk which we walk on regularly.  Many people pass by it daily.  This tree’s scars are beauty marks. And when our battle scars are offered up to the Creator, they, too, become beautiful.  The most glorious and precious beauty marks are the scars on the hands of the Christmas Child.  He bore the guilt and punishment for all who will believe.

Blessings ~ Wendy

Now Thomas… said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe it”… A week later… Jesus came and stood among them and said… to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands.  Reach out your hand and put it into my side.  Stop doubting and believe.”  Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”

John 20:24-28 (in part) NIV 

29 thoughts on “Birch Bark Beauty

  1. Beautiful Wendy! *smiling* Night is 11.50pm and I’m feeling groggy from my medication!
    *whoops* beds calling! *smiling* We can be filled with scares that remind us of the pain, but I never thought of them as being a part of who and what I’ve become. I think I’m a good person and the storm made me that way!.Night!!! ……Paula x

    1. Thank you, Paula! I hope you had a refreshing night’s sleep. Tonight I’m gonna sleep like a log as I went on a hike with my oldest son. Thankfully I have been using my step machine regularly or else I might have died on that hike. 😉 He sure is in good shape… I think that our scars help build compassion in us if we’ve allowed them to. Like you said, our scars can make us a better person.
      Blessings dear friend ~ Wendy xo

  2. Your words really speak deeply. For 4 years we lived in a house with a birch tree in the front yard. It wasn’t doing well so we investigated. Turns out it needed fertilizer! Who’d have thunk…So we began a regimen following the directions strictly and it recovered. I guess my point is that your photos and words are like fertilizer for my soul.

    1. Thanks so much for your words of encouragement. There is something so special about trees that has inspired paintings, songs, and of course the Christmas tree. Even out hiking, today, I was constantly noticing the trees… Then there are famous trees such as the Tree of Life and Calvary’s Tree that are in a class all of their own; no wonder Tolkien gave trees such significance in his trilogy. They really do seem to speak to us of the Creator.
      Blessings ~ Wendy

    1. Thank you, dear Caddo! I used to think that it was sad that the Lord still had his scars – and yet I know that I will want to kneel down and kiss the scars on his feet when I see him. They are marks of love.
      Blessings dear friend – Wendy xo

  3. You did it once again, seeing the beauty of Christ in your surroundings . .and then passing it on to us! Praying to offer those scars daily, and watch what He does with them! God bless you and your sensitive heart for Him!

    1. Thank you, Debbie! Even when I just start off writing about nature it almost always leads to heaven! Even the rocks cry out… as they did on my hike today; there is already a poem brewing for a picture I took.
      Blessings dear friend ~ Wendy

  4. I am even more thankful tonight that our Savior bears scars for our sake. I know I have seen the beauty and faithfulness of God most clearly in times of deep hurt. Remembering those scars sometimes hurts, but God’s love is greater.

    A birch near a church…what things it has seen! Your poem was truly a breath of refreshment tonight, after reading other things that made me sad for the world around me. I pray earnestly tonight for all who have never tasted and seen the Lord’s goodness!

    Thank you for being a fellow pilgrim on this journey! Blessings–Alison

    1. Thank you for blessing me with your kind comment, Alison. Like you, I believe it is “better to spend one day in his house than thousands elsewhere”. When I feel threatened about things in this life I often sing that song to myself… and the other one is “There’s no other place on earth I’d rather be than on the road that leads to Heaven.”

      It is not a popular place to be – I have been abandoned by some because of it…and at Christmas I am particularly reminded of this. I am so glad that I have no intentions of abandoning anyone in my family for any reason at all.

      Blessing dear friend ~ Wendy xo

    1. Thank you, Melody! My dad had some old sealers that had been used for embossing legal papers and I remember playing with them and the papers felt like bumpy birch bark after… Now the secrets out…I’m reliving my childhood through poetry! Better here than through my kids… 😉 Their lives are their own!

      Blessings dear friend ~ Wendy

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