"For a long time I have held my peace, I have kept myself still and restrained myself; now I will cry out like a woman in labor, I will gasp and pant" (Is 42:14)

Day 7: The Tallest Plant In The World

rattan palm, philippines

The Tallest Plant In The World

ave you ever sat on a rattan chair or used a furniture made of rattan? Have you ever wondered what kind of plant it is? It is the tallest plant on earth with the one at Bogor Botanic Gardens in Java Indonesia reaching up to 787 feet long. My first time to see a live rattan palm was when I was still a missionary in Mindanao, Southern Philippines. Rattan palm is a strong, vine-like climbing plant. It differs from most palm tree types because of its climbing behavior. It has spines lined around its whip-like stem or trunk. It uses these spines to attach itself to the surrounding trees and plants on which it grows.

The rattan as a climbing palm needs another tree for it to stand. In tropical countries, the usual partner of the rattan plant is the giant lawaan tree. The symbiotic relationship of these two is amazing. Their partnership mirrors our own relationship with God. We are like the rattan palm. Just as the rattan depends on the lawaan tree, we too depend on God for all the support we need. Without a strong buttress—e.g. any object or person to which one looks for support—the rattan is the lamest plant in the wild. But if its long and winding trunk is buttressed, or supported by another tree, it could even outgrow its host tree without posing any harm to it. Yes, in that case it can outgrow even the tallest trees in the world—the giant sequoias in North America which could reach only up to 380 feet high.

On the seventh day of the Season of Creation imagine yourself being as tall and resilient as this rattan palm. As you feel its towering height, show appreciation to your buttress, the lawaan tree, for sacrificing so much to carry you. 8thWorker.us


  1. This is a stunning metaphor for social capitalism, appreciating how these materials can be springboards for discussion that can be integrated into the K-12 curriculum subjects πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘❤️πŸ‡΅πŸ‡­ Can you imagine the ripple effect of the teachers who will attend your retreatπŸ™πŸ˜‡

    1. Thanks so much! I have to say your words are prophetic. I just gave a two-day retreat that ended today to ADMU Grade school teachers. First batch of 8 teachers and I have to say they are our first recipients of these modules! They gave a very good feedback in their sharing! GBU!


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