“When the dove returned to him in the evening, there in its beak was a freshly plucked olive leaf! Then Noah knew that the water had receded from the earth.” Genesis 8:11
Peace. Hope. Victory. That is what the olive leaf from the story of Noah’s ark symbolizes. When the dove brings back that very real and physical representation of life, we are reminded that even in the most tragic of stories there is hope. There is healing. There is an olive leaf.
The olive leaf wasn’t the end of the story though, it was just the beginning. It wasn’t a sign that things were better—it was a sign that they would be. That’s what is beautiful about the story. This is not the part of the story when everything got easier. It’s the part of the story when God reminds us that there is always an olive leaf. There is always hope. Hope is not the end, it’s the beginning and anticipation of something new. We just have to be willing to send out the dove. We can’t have the olive leaf without the dove in this story—and we can’t have the peace we need in our lives without opening our hearts and hands to receive it.
My name can mean various different things depending on where you look for the information. No matter how far you dig though, it is always brought back to the same meaning—olive tree.
“The olive tree is a very strong tree capable of withstanding stress more than other kinds of trees. This tree is quite distinctive and unique because it has certain characteristics that make it one of a kind, the olive tree is drought resistant in nature and it has a very hardy and strong structure that makes it spectacular. According to legends, it was believed that when the olive tree was destroyed and burnt into ashes, the tree sprouted back to an incredible height just within a day. If you see the olive tree this can be a sign that you are willing and ready to face all of your trouble and face life situations readily. This can also be a sign that no matter what you are going through or whatever you are experiencing at the moment you will be able to stay strong and fight to survive at all cost. The olive tree is also a sign of love, peace, and harmony.”
How can I ever live up to that? Most days I certainly don’t—
but I want to.
So this is your friendly little olive tree reminding you that with the peace, promises, and power of Jesus, you can get through whatever you are facing. Yes you can. Within each and every one of our stories there is an olive leaf. So reach out your hand, release the dove, and wait for it.
Wait for the olive leaf.
This time of year we talk a lot about being present with the ones we are spending our time with. We see posts encouraging us to put our phones down, turn off the TV, and unplug from social media for the holidays. I think that as a society we absolutely […]
So as you may already know, Ariana Grande just recently donated 5 million dollars to BetterHelp (an online counseling service) as a way to provide a month of free therapy for anyone who needs it. Therapy has been a topic of discussion within my family for years now. My 8 […]
It’s been longer than I’d like since I’ve written a blog, but the weight of many things has driven me to break that silence. I’ve definately gone longer before, but never combined with this much on my mind. The problem is that I can’t seem to find the words for […]
It was a day in September—the year 2004. I had just graduated high school in June. I was attending a community college and majoring in dance education. Nothing fancy. Just doing what I loved but in a more serious manner. Still living at home in Lowell MA, and wondering where […]
If you read my previous blog, then you know that in the past year and a half I came to understand and embrace my anxiety on a deeper level. The pandemic truly reshaped me in a lot of ways. In addition to my anxiety, I began to see that there […]
“You look depressed.” Someone that has known me for a long time said that recently. No one has ever said that to me. I didn’t realize how much I needed to hear it. As a child I was pretty much always happy. Of course life could be sad or disappointing […]
Last year my family and I decided to start organizing an Operation Christmas Child event on a small scale. If you don’t already know what Operation Christmas Child is—it’s an incredible worldwide project and movement that is run by the organization Samaritan’s Purse. Every year in early November, all over […]
April is “autism awareness month”—but unfortunately a lot of what I have seen take place overall, is not creating an awareness for what’s most important. I also prefer the term “autism acceptance”, but I think there’s power when we merge the two together. Here’s what I mean: Acceptance of autistic […]
2020. What a year. The year I “decided” to stay home with my children 24/7 and “homeschool” them. (Crazy I know right? lol) The year I closed my home daycare after doing it for 7 years. The year it hit me that there is so much about this parenting thing […]
I experienced something over the weekend that I would like to bring awareness to. It has taken me a couple days to process and find the right words to even say. Since my son Caleb has been diagnosed with autism, I have been trying to educate myself by reading books […]
One of my favorite things to do during the Christmas season is to drive around on a wintery day and listen to The Waltz of the Snowflakes from The Nutcracker. All. The. Feels. I have seen The Nutcracker more times than I can count. As a dancer, it’s always been […]
I see something within the world of politics that has bothered me for a while. That is this—People allowing a political party to dictate their lives. Christians especially should be reaching for way more than just the conservative or liberal card on these issues. I am not talking about voting. […]
This is one of my writing assignments from a course with Bob Goff. In order to keep the nature of the class exclusive and private, I will not share what my writing prompt was. Enjoy! Two hours, twenty nine minutes, and seventeen seconds. That’s how long it took me to […]
“The kids who are going further in life aren’t the special ed kids sorry to say but it’s the truth.” This statement was said by a woman on the internet who feels that it is unfair that the special ed children in her district get to attend school five days […]
This is one of my writing assignments from a course with Bob Goff. In order to keep the nature of the class exclusive and private, I will not share what my writing prompt was. Enjoy! You would think that my most challenging child would be my autistic son, but these days […]
I have been attending church for 34 years. I was actually “attending church” before I was even born! (Haha) I have never walked away from the church as an organization. Therefore, there was never a time in my life that I wasn’t actively attending an established church… Until now. Soon […]
The Good Samaritan “Jesus replied with a story: “A Jewish man was traveling from Jerusalem down to Jericho, and he was attacked by bandits. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him up, and left him half dead beside the road. “By chance a priest came along. But when he […]
Last week I made a post on fb that included the verses from Matthew 21:12-13 which states, “Jesus entered the Temple and began to drive out all the people buying and selling animals for sacrifice. He knocked over the tables of the money changers and the chairs of those […]
“When the dove returned to him in the evening, there in its beak was a freshly plucked olive leaf! Then Noah knew that the water had receded from the earth.” Genesis 8:11 Peace. Hope. Victory. That is what the olive leaf from the story of Noah’s ark symbolizes. When the […]
Over the past week, I have come across something that several people I know have re-posted. I have some thoughts on it that I would like to share. Firstly, here is what the post says: “Have you ever noticed how in the scriptures men are always going up into the […]
Many of us walked into 2020 with a picture of what we thought our year would look like. In the blink of an eye, many of the things we planned came to a sudden halt. COVID-19 took to the stage of our lives, making the course of our life for […]
Just one week ago, I was sitting here writing a blog about my mission trip that I had returned from just one week before that. I was happy, hopeful, and encouraged from my time in El Mirador. How quickly life can change. Now I sit here feeling unsettled as the […]
Since my son Caleb has been diagnosed with autism, I have already had people say the most absurd things to me. I understand that most comments are innocent—and honestly, I know that I am just as guilty of saying foolish things to people out of ignorance. However, there is one […]
Last week I saw the new version of the Lion King. I thought the movie was great! I am definitely partial to the original in all of its bright colors and child like wonder. However, there was something powerful about real looking lions portraying this epic story. I have seen […]
I want to start off by recalling back on some of my history. I have danced my entire life since I was three, and I lived most of those years dealing with several chronic back issues. The biggest thing I have always had to deal with is my scoliosis. I […]