Meet our apple tree, the heart of our yard, under whose branches we have lain quilts to cuddle and have read-alouds; which has seen picnics aplenty and whose boughs have lovingly held many a child. Three years ago our landlord, a good man but not a tree lover, chopped away all the branches until the lush tree was nothing more than a stump with three protruding stumps. I cried for an entire afternoon. But nothing could be gone. Our beautiful tree was gone.
And yet, even at that moment, the ability of life to regenerate itself was working deep within what seemed lifeless to us. The following Spring, tiny shoots sprouted forth from the wounds; slender branches reaching outward. The following Spring leaves and shoots sprouted in a green frenzy. This year, the thicker branches sprouted beautiful flowers and we crossed our fingers and waited...In time, our sweet tree gave us ... apples.
You see here her fruit which she bears, upon which our neighborhood birds love to feast...
This all reminds me of the Love of God and how it manifests itself in the hearts of His children to make old things new, and to give life to that which once was dead. It is a miracle that happens everyday somewhere, all of the time.
And now, for your eating enjoyment, a recipe from my neighbor, Amy H., who goes throughout our neighborhood, delivering baskets of freshly baked goods (and love).
AMY'S APPLE CAKE
4 C. Shredded Apples (4-5)
1/2 C. Oil
2 t. Soda
2 C. Sugar
1 t. Vanilla
2 C. Flour
2 t. Cinnamon
1 t. Salt
1 C. Chopped Walnuts (optional)
Mix together. Grease and flour 9x13 pan. Cook at 350 degrees for 50 minutes.
3/4 C. Brown Sugar
3/4 C. Sugar
3/4 C. Whipping Cream
3/4 C. Butter
1 1/2 t. Vanilla
Warm until dissoved. Serve warm over cool cake.
Top with Cool Whip or ice cream.
Now, pretend that I have delivered you a warm basket of freshly baked Apple Cake (and love).
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