• C. Ryan Chandler

The Gnarled Tree


I am starting a sermon series on sin this Sunday and ran across this poem I had written in 2016. I was in Glorietta, NM, with a group of students for camp. I remember taking a short hike into the mountains for a little alone time with God. In my journal entry from the day before, I expressed that I did not want to go all week without hearing a word from the Lord.


As I perched on a bench overlooking a canyon leading down to the campsite, I noticed an unorthodox tree among the others. For some reason, the tree reminded me of sin's effect on us. Sin isolates us from God, other people, and makes us homeless. I wrote a poem about it.


I met a stubborn tree today,

His branches dark and bare.

Although his fellows gathered green,

The tree refused their share.


He stood alone to mock the sun.

He snarled at the rain.

And God above, lamenting,

Loosed grace, the tree abstained.


"Lord, save us from sin. Draw us constantly to one another, to the community of Christ, where Jesus lives, moves, works, forgives, restores, and transforms."

20 views1 comment

Recent Posts

See All