All that glitter is not gold goes an old saying. In today’s world, I feel this saying might just be reverse. The people at large admire what is glamorous and pleasing to the eyes. We are in an age where the technology has so gripped us that we are never satisfied, because we have made our needs into wants. In this short reflection I want to highlight that many of us love to admire what is externally beautiful and fascinating but pay little or no attention to what is more deeper and durable. We do not really care about the inner substance of this charming ‘being’.
Let us take an example of a tree/plant and its roots. Every one of us admires a tree or a plant that is green and leafy. This beautiful nature attracts our eyes because of its external exquisiteness. However, let us take a minute to think beyond. Do we know what keeps this tree or a plant green and healthy? Have we ever thought about on what does the duration of the tree or plant depend? The power that keeps the tree/plant evergreen and strong is its invisible roots. If the roots of a tree are weak, and are on the upper soil the tree, will last but for a while.
I believe we can apply this simile to our lives too. Very often, we busy ourselves in keeping our external and visible self green and beautiful. We do not really concentrate on the roots that will maintain our attractiveness. What could these roots mean for us? Roots could mean building our life on character and on God. No matter how beautiful the tree is, no matter how charming the plant is, if its roots are not deep enough it will not survive even the tiny wind force. But on the other hand if the roots are in the deep soil, nothing drastic can shake the tree. Who is our deep soil? It is Jesus Christ. Jesus compliments the wise man who builds his house on the rock, the wind blew, the flood came and dashed against the house but no harm was done to it.
Let us then live to deepen our roots and be evergreen, giving joy and smile to all whom we encounter in our daily life. The joy and happiness we give to others should not be at the periphery level, but it should be long lasting. Our deep roots should be the integrity of our life. Our public life should be the fruit of our private life. Let our greatest charm be a life of virtue lived in the solid foundations of our Christian faith.
By Pawanjit Singh SDB