A Day In The Other Tree…(today’s life altering experiment)

August 9, 2013

I will be conducting an experiment today, and I’d be honored if you’d join me.  I am going to be spending the entire day today in a tree. To be technically accurate,  I’ve been in this tree for a long time, but I simply haven’t always been aware of how encompassing and liberating living in this tree can be.  Let me explain…

My Previous Career As Judge

Before I became aware of this new tree, I was only aware of the old tree.  Life in the old tree is quite weighty.  It comes with a lot of responsibility.  All who live in the old tree end up getting into the same profession.  Everyone becomes a judge.  The life of a judge is not an easy one.  Having to make decisions continually throughout the day takes its toll on us.  Because the essence of life in the old tree is the knowledge of good & evil, by default, we are always examining and making judgements regarding whether something is good or evil.  These judgements are even happening at the simplest of levels.  After a while, we need a vacation from our profession as judges.

The truth is, we were never meant to live in the old tree.  Only judges can live in that tree, and we were never good at that job.  We were made to live in another tree, however.  We were made to live in a new tree.  In the new tree, our only responsibility is to eat and rest by finding life.  The tree we’re living in now is the tree of life.  As a result, I’d like to conduct a grand one day experiment.

A New Workload For A New Day 

If you’d like to join me for this one day experiment, you’ll have to clear all your duties as judge for the day.  Don’t worry, if you want to return to your old profession as judge, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to do that tomorrow.  Today, however, is special.  Today, since I am hanging out in the tree of life, I’ll simply be looking for life in the activities where I was previously employed as a judge of good & evil.  I’ll also be recording the results.  For example:

Today, when I am in the car driving, I will not judge whether the other drivers are good or bad (evil).  I will suspend my judgment of their driving ability and only look for a sighting of life (Christ).  I will then make a note of the life that I find on the notepad app on my i-phone.    

Today, if I am stuck in traffic, I will not make a judgement as to whether or not the situation is good or bad (evil).  I will simply look for a sighting of life (Christ).  I will then make a note of the life that I find on the notepad app on my i-phone.     

Today, if my car breaks down or if I have need of something, I will not make a judgement of the situation as being good or bad (evil).  I will simply look for a sighting of life (Christ) in the situation.  I will then make a note of the life that I find on the notepad app on my i-phone.  

Today, if I am in a conversation with someone, I will not look and evaluate what they are saying through the grid of good & evil.  I will simply look for a sighting of life (Christ).  I will then make a note of the life that I find on the notepad app on my i-phone.

Today, if I am observing the actions of myself or another, I will not evaluate what they are doing (or not doing) through the grid of good & evil.  I will simply look for a sighting of life (Christ).  I will then make a note of the life that I find on the notepad app on my i-phone.

Today, if I watch television, listen to music, or watch a film, I will not evaluate what I am seeing through the grid of good & evil.  I will simply look for a sighting of life (Christ).  I will then make a note of the life that I find on the notepad app on my i-phone.

This is the nature of today’s experiment.  Obviously, I cannot give an example of every situation that may occur today, but I hope you are getting the picture.  Since we are no longer living in the good & evil tree today, we’re going to take the day off from being preoccupied with what is good or evil.  Since we’re living in the life tree today, life will be our only focus today.  If you’d like to come back here to this post and share your results in the comment section, that would be awesome.  

By the way…it will always be today.

Jamal Jivanjee 

NOTE: if you didn’t see this week’s post about the day that fear lost a major battle in my life, please click here.  

Jamal Jivanjee

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29 responses to A Day In The Other Tree…(today’s life altering experiment)

  1. Jamal,

    Most excelllent!

  2. I already have a report for you from the Tree of Life, sir.

    Today I am supposed to be working on my house in order to get it ready to sell. I am on a “tight schedule” for getting projects done. However, I have recently found an author whose words have been a wellspring of life and refreshing waters, turning me to Christ in a new and creative way. Therefore, instead of judging my “late start” on today’s projects as bad, I have chosen to give Jesus all the time He wants to dwell in quietness and stillness. So, I’m just now preparing to get started on my projects. Normally, I would be judging myself very harshly in this circumstance. But since I’m not in that tree, I’m not employed in judicial affairs. Life has been sweeter and more energizing than my coffee today and smoother, more comforting than the warm butter on my toast.

  3. Kenneth Dawson August 9, 2013 at 4:58 pm

    I’m one step ahead of you..this past Tuesday night I went to a bible study at a friends hospital room..he is dying from cancer..him and the others are all charismatic..I’m not..before I went I submitted myself to gods control in fear of how I would handle this charismatic situation..they believe that as Christians we have the authority to cast out the cancer..after listening to them talking about that subject..the spirit of god got us off to the subject of living our lives by the life of Christ in dwelling us and the fellowship was sweet..not one controversy about the right or wrong of doctrine just us sharing the love of Christ with this dying person..I was blessed.

    • That’s a beautiful example of what happens when Christ alone becomes our focus. Thx for sharing Kenneth.

  4. Reminds me of this in 2 Cor 4:18: “while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” Looking unto He who is eternal and the fact that we are one Spirit with Him is the way to navigate the temporal. We need this reminder. Thanks Jamal.

  5. Amen Matt. Here’s another ” Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. Col. 3:2-3

  6. So grateful there is always room in the Tree of Life…scoooch over. May I always remember to no longer look at good/evil, but only to look for Him in everything that comes my way. Great lesson, Jamal. Great unfolding of His truth I should say.

  7. Jamal

    As always another great blog that asks the reader to read, think, consider, and act. Is there a possibility we could publish this article in a news letter to reach our community? If so shoot me a e-mail with details on attribution, restrictions, etc. I would love it if parts of a larger community we are involved with could read and discuss this but some folks don’t have Internet access.


  8. Heather Toftness August 12, 2013 at 3:24 am

    Hey Jamal,

    So on Friday morning I had run over to a neighboring town with the kids to visit a playground and spend time with a dear sister. On the way home I fell in line behind a truck that was going 40 mph in a 55 mph zone. To say the least I was annoyed and following closely hoping it would encourage the driver to speed up a bit. Well, it didn’t. And so, we traveled this way for 10 minutes or so until my turn came and I sped off in another direction.

    It was not long after returning home that I had a chance to read your blog and Christ became crystal clear. At this season in my life I feel as though I am in a rush to get to a “place” where I think Christ is more prevalent when in fact I am tailing Him hard. Following Him is a much slower pace and is often times difficult for me to enjoy when I look at how fast we could be going. I know that I am often wishing He would just hurry up and get me to where I want to be now! And here was the kicker… I was so relieved when my turn came so that I could get to my destination much quicker. However, Christ showed me that even though I truly long to get to this “place” where I think he is more prevalent, if I choose to take a short cut to quicken the pace, it will likely be at the expense of closeness to Him, and may even be a different destination all together!

    Thanks for encouraging me to see Christ in all things!

    • Heather,

      So great to hear from you sister. I love how the Lord speaks. Thanks for sharing your experience with us:)

  9. I understand your purpose in this ‘experiment’ is to make people aware of how often they let the world get under their skin, as opposed to calling on the peace and love of the Holy Spirit to rule in place of our human frustrations. However, I disagree with throwing out judging good and evil, or even assessing motives. We can still choose to walk in the Spirit while remaining vigilant in our discernment.

    “But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.” (Hebrews 5:14)

    • Paul,

      Thanks for your comment. One of my favorite verses is Hebrews 5:14. I was actually going to include that passage in this post. Thanks for bringing it up. As you might know, I do not agree with how you are applying this passage at all. The scriptures are often quoted in such a way to mean the opposite of what they are saying. I believe your comment to be a strong example of that. Let me explain:

      The context of the passage you quoted is about spiritual food. If we resist the urge to ‘proof text’ and look at the whole of the scriptures, we’ll see that starting in the beginning, mankind has had a choice about what ‘food’ to eat. We can either eat from the forbidden tree of ‘knowledge’ of good & evil, or we can eat from the tree of life. Eating from the tree of ‘knowledge’ is evil, and eating from the tree of ‘life’ is good. In Christ, we now have the ability to eat from the ‘good’ tree of life. Those who have become mature, can discern that which comes from the evil ‘knowledge’ tree, or the good ‘life’ tree. This is exactly what I have said in this article, and this is also what Hebrews 5:14 states as well. They agree completely. I hope that makes sense Paul.

  10. UPDATE: Jamal, this has truly changed my life. Once i hung out in the Tree of Life, it was clear how much freedom there is here! i get to love everyone & see them as my brothers & sisters instead of “sizing them up” as in ‘are they saved or not’ ‘do they think like me or not’ i may have jumped back over to the other tree once or twice, not realizing it until i found myself judging, but have quickly come back to the Tree of Life where the air is fresh & the view is always spectacular!! Life changing i tell you! Love you, my brother!!

  11. the Tree of Life is so ‘self explanatory’ He expresses Himself to us and we find this is where we have belonged all the time. Freedom from judging, and freedom to Love, and to Love freely through His Love, and this I truly find is the ‘way’ of Life.

    I Love you Jamal very very much, you are an expression of Love!

  12. Jamal,

    Since it is still Today on your post, I have a few words I will say:  

    I am preparing to move to a new location, packing my belongings and doing all prep of paperwork and writing the to do things on a list, so that I will not forget. As I do these things, I am pondering on the Love in Christ who is in us and through us.  

    I dearly love the saints here, and am overwhemed by their expressed love for me as I am about to go where Father sends me. They have given me a precious gift beyond their knowing: This departure is not an ending of their Love, our Love, but rather an expanding continuation. The Love we possess in Christ remains, no matter where we are or what we may encounter, Love never leaves us.

    As I pack things into plastic bins, there is one thing I need not pack, Love. No matter where I go upon this land, I know that I am always and forever where I am: IN Love, IN Christ, IN us.

    Christ in us is our Perfection, and our Perfection is our Love.

    He intimately, freely and fully loves us through us.

    That is one of my Christ sights that I see, Today. Enough for now, back to busy.

    • “love never leaves us.”

      That line from your comment sticks out to me. Thx for sharing:)

      • What I meant by “Love never leaves us” is that we always carry in our hearts His Love that we have lived in and through one another, His Love within the deep personal and the purest intimate relationships with our brothers and sisters, which is His Love being perfected in the body of Christ. Love increases in us, so then, love leaves us.

  13. Jamal,
    I stand convicted. This week, I have judged all over and up and down the place. I judged because I felt judged. I was wrong. I want instead to look for a glimpse of Jesus–wherever and however it might appear.

    Thank you, friend. The Spirit moved in and through you (and thus, this post) and I am changed.

    • Thanks for your honest sharing Nicole. I’m so very encouraged that He used this post to help shift your perspective:)

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