As we’ve been looking at over the last few Mondays, we have a surprising amount of lessons to learn from sequoia trees. We’ve learned the importance of being in community with one another, not isolating ourselves, and sharing resources. Today, buckle up for a riveting conversation about tree bark (it’ll be good, I promise)…

Sequoias are thick-skinned.

The bark of the Giant Sequoia is generally thicker than that of any other species of tree on earth. Its heavy bark is a major contributing factor to the tree’s longevity. Sections of the bark will exceed two feet in thickness.

If you need a visual, grab two rulers, put them end to end, and you’ve got the thickness of the bark on some sequoia trees. No wonder they survive so long through such rough conditions!

Some thicker skin would do all of us a lot of good. Sensitivity isn’t a bad thing, but it can become a bad thing when you allow every little thing to get “under your skin” and offend you.

I’ve been trying to teach my kids this lesson for a while now. When one calls the other a name or says something rude, which sets the other one off, I remind them that there is an endless list of things they’ll face for the rest of their lives that they can either be offended by or let roll off their backs. Choose the latter.

Be gracious in your response, think the best of others, and persevere, even when it would be easy to be offended and entitled. Be slow to quit and quick to forgive. You’ll last a lot longer that way and life will be much happier for you and those around you!

K E V I N • M I L L E R

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