Nelson Henderson's famous quote, “Plant trees that you don't intend to sit under the shade of”, is a powerful reminder of the importance of selfless service. It is a biblical concept that encourages us to serve without any expectations or plans to receive in return. In other words, we are the hands and feet of Jesus and should serve with no other motive than to help others. The old Greek peasant is often praised for his optimism in planting olive trees, even though they take 20 years to bear fruit.
This is a perfect example of how we can serve future generations by planting trees that we will never sit under the shade of. By planting these trees, we are providing our children and grandchildren with a better future. Virgil's “Tarde Crescentis Olivae” speaks to this concept as well. It suggests that when we plant trees in shade under which we know we will never sit, we have begun to discover the true meaning of life.
We can think calmly and with a practical affection about a world in which we will not participate directly. We can plant acorns with good humor, so that our grandchildren can protect themselves from the sun among the wide oak trees of the future. In conclusion, Nelson Henderson's quote reminds us that serving without an agenda is an important part of life. We can serve future generations by planting trees in shade under which we know we will never sit. This is a powerful way to ensure that our children and grandchildren have a brighter future.