Tree of Life


Church of the Resurrection Insights Blog

Amy Oden


Proverbs 15:4 Wholesome speech is a tree of life, but dishonest talk breaks the spirit.

I love this image of our speech as the “tree of life!” The tree of life bears fruit in every season and its leaves heal the nations (Rev 22:2). It is planted by living water and is a source of abundant life. I love to think of my speech, the words I use and things I say, like a tree of life. This image invites me to be intentional with life-giving words.


We live in a highly reactive world right now. We are quick to “like” or “dislike” a comment, photo, article or statement. We do not take time to listen, understand or explore but instead, we often jump to conclusions, carelessly imposing labels on others.


And this reactivity doesn’t just stay on social media. It spills over into our most cherished personal relationships, where habitual reactivity means we accuse or prejudge, rather than pause to consider more life-giving words.


Today, try this prayer experiment: First, imagine yourself planted like a tree, with roots going deep into nourishing soil. Visualize God’s love, grace and mercy, feeding those roots. Next, visualize that love, grace and mercy coming through the roots, up into your body, beginning from your feet, up through your legs and filling your body. You might visualize it as light or energy particles. Now, allow that love, grace and mercy to fill your mouth, coat your tongue. What does it taste like? Next, imagine branches and leaves sprouting out of your mouth, bearing the fruit of love in all seasons, offering leaves to heal the nations. How might you practice “wholesome speech [that] is the tree of life?” How might your words, or silence, today be life-giving?