“The Praying Tree Cutters” by Reva Lachica Moore

“If My People Will Humble Themselves and Pray” by Reva Lachica Moore

My husband J.R. was walking under the trees in our front yard when a falling bark almost hit him. He looked up and noticed a cluster of pine trees with parts of their trunks exposed. Their pine needles had turned yellowish brown and pieces of bark littered the ground.

He asked me to go outside to look at the trees. Four 60-ft pine trees had been attacked by pine beetles. The numerous small holes on the tree trunks told us it was too late to save them.

Pine beetles feed voraciously on the barks of pine trees and usually attack the middle and upper portion of the trunk. The beetles make a hole on the bark, feed on the tree sap and create tunnels to reach the center of the trunk. Once the beetles reach the core of the tree, the adult females lay eggs in there. All of these affect the absorption of water and nutrients of the tree eventually resulting to its death. Pine beetles could kill a pine tree within a few days after infestation. A week later, our pine trees were dead.

Cutting the dead trees down and hauling them off could cost as much as $1,000 per tree so I asked God to find us the right tree cutter who will do a good job at a reasonable price. Before long we started finding business cards and flyers left on our door by tree cutters who would drive around our subdivision looking for dead trees.

Each week, tree cutters would knock at our door, but their quotes were too high. One day the doorbell rang. A tree cutter stood outside the door. A few minutes later, my husband announced that the dead trees will get cut down and hauled off for $2,000.

Because of the danger involved in “felling” a tree, I prayed for the safety of the tree cutters. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration: “More people are killed while felling trees than during any other logging activity.”

Professional tree cutters know the rules to safely “fell” a tree to assure everyone’s safety and to make sure the tree does not fall on the house or other structures. Besides having the right safety gears, they must know how to cut the notch at the bottom of the trunk, and make sure the tree will have a clear falling path. Our dead trees were only 8 feet away from our house.

Through the blinds, I watched the tree cutters walk toward the dead trees. Then suddenly I saw a most amazing sight! The 5 tree cutters formed a circle, held hands and bowed their heads. They were praying! How wonderful! I thought. I hollered at J.R. to come see them.

Each worker started to get busy. One threw a rope up the first tree. It hooked onto a huge branch. One unloaded the equipment. Five minutes later, the earth shook when the first tree fell. The man with the chain saw quickly cut the limbs and the trunk while others were hauling the smaller pieces into a pile. A tractor with a gripper picked up the huge tree trunk and loaded it onto a flat bed truck. They raked and picked up debris.

I went back to my work in front of the computer. Then I heard another loud thud. The second tree had fallen. An hour later, the earth shook again as the third tree fell. I opened the blinds again to watch them work. The last tree was the biggest and the closest to our house. I felt the earth shake terribly when it fell. The tree cutters worked fast. In two hours, they picked up everything, raked the yard and removed the stumps.

After they loaded up their tools, the 5 tree cutters stood in a circle, held hands and with bowed heads prayed again. After giving them their payment, we commended them for praying. They said they were Christians and they pray together before they leave for their first job each morning, then pray on the spot before they start their work and pray again after each job and pray again before each one heads for home. It was so wonderful to see praying tree cutters.

In these times of great change and turmoil in our country, if each one of us, including our government leaders, will seek God and humble ourselves and pray for our nation, what wonders and blessings we will have and how much greater this country will be.

2 Chronicles 7:14 says….”If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”