The Trouble Tree

  • "The carpenter I hired to help me restore an old farmhouse had just finished a rough first day on the job. A flat tire made him lose an hour of work, his electric saw quit, and now his ancient pickup truck refused to start. While I drove him home, he sat in stony silence.

    On arriving, he invited me in to meet his family. As we walked toward the front door, he paused briefly at a small tree, touching the tips of the branches with both hands. When opening the door he underwent an amazing transformation. His tanned face was wreathed in smiles and he hugged his two small children and gave his wife a kiss.

    Afterward he walked me to the car. We passed the tree and my curiosity got the better of me. I asked him about what I had seen him do earlier.

    "Oh, that's my trouble tree," he replied." I know I can't help having troubles on the job, but one thing's for sure, troubles don't belong in the house with my wife and the children. So I just hang them on the tree every night when I come home. Then in the morning I pick them up again."

    He paused. "Funny thing is," he smiled, "when I come out in the morning to pick 'em up, there ain't nearly as many as I remember hanging up the night before."

    Purpose of the Story: Not every day is going to be 100% perfect. We all have things that seem to weigh us down from time to time. However, negative energy and attitudes are contagious and cancerous.  Just one "Negative Nelly" can set the entire atmosphere up into flames.  To avoid this, when you come to practice, please be sure to hang things up on your trouble tree.  Don't bring bad events from the day to practice.  When you enter the gym, we want to see eager, determined, focused kids!