“See That Plant There? It Travels.”

Personal Reflection: Here’s another piece Gerald wrote for my site on preparedness. It’s a fictional account with thought provoking points.


…though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. (2 Corinthians 4:16)

Letter from Karl

Dear George,

We just returned from a southwestern survivalist pow wow. A lot I could tell you about, there are always new things developing with the survivalist network. They are a very lively group of people. One guy said “The neat thing about these get togethers is, you share your ideas and learn stuff from other guys, and everybody gains.”

I have an idea I thought you could use, since you are a Bible guy. Maybe it could be used in a sermon or something?

Don’t know if I told you but I am always on the lookout for birds. A guy told me that it is a great hobby because no matter where you are, there are birds. In the animal kingdom, they are the great survivors. They almost always find what they need and, if they don’t, they fly to someplace where they can.

Anyway, before we left, I decided to take a walk. I had never spent much time in this area and I took my binoculars and my copy of Roger Tory Petersen’s Field Guide to the Birds. Helga couldn’t go with me because she got sunburned right away. Her complexion is so fair you know, she can’t take much sun. Some lady told her that her red face matched her Indian outfit, which she didn’t appreciate very much.

So I was going alone and a local asked if he could walk along with me, which I welcomed because it was all new to me. The first thing I saw was a bird that looked like a crow but had white on him like he had on a tuxedo. I asked him what it was and he said it was a magpie. Said they are raiders and thieves, but are so smart and beautiful you have to admire them. Then I asked him why all the doves were young ones. Where were the adults? He said those were the adults, the western doves are a lot smaller than the turtle doves we know in the East. Maybe there isn’t as much food out here so they are smaller, less scrounging they have to do. It works for them.

Well we had a good walk, him telling me about stuff. I said I would like to get some tumbleweed seeds to take home. Be a real curiosity, you know. He laughed and said, “What’s the matter, you easterners run out of thistles?” He said the tumbleweed is just a thistle broken off by the wind and rolling along, like that song, “Rolling Along With the Tumblin’ Tumbleweed.” He said there are over 85 kinds of thistles in the US and he wasn’t sure which the tumbleweed is, but maybe a Russian thistle.

I spotted a really interesting plant, it looked like a cactus lying on its side, like a giant caterpillar. He told me “See that plant there? It travels.” I said, “You mean like the thistles that the wind blows around?” He said it wasn’t blown around, it stays rooted in the ground all the time but it travels for miles. I was wondering if he was puttin’ the shuck on me like guys around here like to do, like the Jackalope. But he said the way it travels is the part that faces the sun grows. But the other end of the plant, away from the sun, keeps dying off, so after a period of years the plant has moved miles away from where it was. People taking pictures of some place saw the plants were in a different spot from picture to picture.

Now here is my idea. What if people were like that plant, they grow in one way and die in another? Years go by and they are in a different place than where they started, but it is so gradual that nobody notices it, maybe they don’t even notice it themselves. Here is what I thought, what if, with people, they are facing, not the sun, but the Son? The Son gives them light and they grow, and as they grow they get closer and closer to the Son?

It’s just an idea, but can you use it?


Author: Gerald Franz

Gerald Franz (1935-2014) was like a second father to me in the 27 years I knew him. Brilliant and eccentric, with a wide array of interests, he fit the definition of being gifted. He strove to shake people loose from their conventional thinking. As a Bible believing Christian, his favorite and most studied Bible subject was prophecy. Writing became a means of teaching in his later years. See more about Gerald here.