In our nakedness, we are all merely accumulated layers. Some are straight and smooth. They are easy for others to see, reflecting an undisturbed surface. Some layers are curled in upon themselves or twisted into the space of others. They alternately hide and reveal our growth over periods when it was difficult to find our place in the world.

Each layer we wear carries a story of our roots and our culture. Each represents the circumstances during which it grew and the quantity and quality of nurturing we received from food, water, and love. Our layers reflect the richness of the soil and the balance of sun and shade, warmth and chill, and the strength of the winds we’ve experienced.

Are the accumulated straight and regular patterns monotonously smooth or soothingly calm? Are the curled and twisted layers tumultuously disordered or intriguingly complex? The depth and patterns of our layers make us significant and amazing In whichever form they developed.

We can’t change the layers we grew as we matured. But like the olive tree in the illustration, we can still bear fruit for the nourishment and enjoyment of the world. The fruit we create is a distinctive gift influenced by our uniquely acquired layers.

As with the tree, the mechanics and process for bearing our fruit would be unprotected and impossible without those layers covering our core. Their depth and patterns reflect our growth but not our gifts. Our distinctive layers influence and flavor our unique gifts. We were each differently planted, layered, and grown for a reason.

Written and published for W.I.S.H. – Women Inspiring, Supporting, and Helping non-profits and organizations in our community. 

© Karen S Justice

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