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  • Anne Williams

Grounded in a Windy City

When I moved to Chicago in 2007, I was perplexed by the nickname "The Windy City". Sure there were some windy moments by the lake. And yes, there were moments I'd be walking along sidewalks between skyscrapers and feel like I was in a wind tunnel, but on the whole, Chicago was nothing close to the wind in central Kansas.


Then I learned that there is an alternative explanation for that nickname, having nothing to do with the weather. That it is used to explain a history of corrupt politicians who would sway which ever way the wind blew... Or whichever way they were offered money to lean.


I thought of that title when I saw these wind blown leaves forced up against a fence.


After my immediate reaction I noticed a few leaves - there were only a few - remaining on the ground. A picture of what I want to be.


Rooted.

Grounded.

Stable.


I long to be so settled that nothing can pick me up and blow me across the yard.


I think about those firmly planted leaves and wonder what sets them apart. Perhaps the curl of the corner of the leaf hooks just so around the blade of grass and they are permanently adjoined. Perhaps they have picked up some moisture and the heaviness anchors them down. Perhaps they have hid behind a protective shield.


I dream of the strategies I could employ. Surely it is intentionality that sets a rooted person apart.


Habits.

Small decisions made consistently.

Mindset.


God spoke about this to the prophet Jeremiah :

“Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord,

whose confidence is in him.

They will be like a tree planted by the water

that sends out its roots by the stream.

It does not fear when heat comes;

its leaves are always green.

It has no worries in a year of drought

and never fails to bear fruit.”

Oh that we could be planted. Firmly planted roots by The Water, our steady source of life, sustenance, and redemption.


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