I was taking a brisk walk in my back yard and looking at the surroundings. I caught a glimpse at our neighbors adjoining trees. We are, were always complaining of having to pick the nuts or acorns that fell or fall on our side of the property. And we would always be complaining about how the branches infringe and span into our property. And we took no thought for those tree. At one time we even had a gardener prune the branches that crossed the property line... But one afternoon I was greeting my neighbor and chattiing with him and he said he wanted permissioin to get on the roof of my house and trim the branches that crossed the property ontu our side. And I said, by all means, do. And I asked him what kind of trees they were and he said, oaks. He said that that previous owner of his property was into horticulture and had all kind of trees and plants in the property of his house, but one by one had all died and only a few and the oaks were left... And this morning, I was romping and teasing my dog and playing we her. And I suddenly remembered a recent trip I had made to a distant city where my sister lives and how she had taken us to a nearby park where she loved the streets lined with 100 year old, you said it, oaks. And she loved those trees and that park. And now I told my mother, hail you, those trees you been pruning are the same kind that line the park your daughter loves... And we realized how ignorant we were to despise something that wanted to cross into out life and give itself meaning and we wanted to prune those branches that crossed into our property, our life. And the acorns that we would hatefully sweep and toss into the trash, where oak nuts. And now we took the time to comtemplate the color of its leaves and wanted to ask our neighbor to give us some cuttling to grow some more oaks for ourselves... And turning to my bible, I was reading about the samaritan woman at the well, when she first talked to Jesus, she said, "Who are you, Jews don't associate with Samaritans...", You are crossing into my property, you see...And then the hated Jew, she had learned to depise by tradition and ignorance, had just told her all she had done. And now this man, now became the most important person in her life. She realized the value of this person speaking to her, a prophet, more than prophet, she said, "Could this be the Christ...?"... And she ran back to town and told everyone that the branches that encroached her property line, were of an oaks, divine heavenly! And she wanted a cuttling of this oak for herself, "Give me some of that living water...!" that she despisingly cut the branches off before, she knew this was an, The Oak, the Messiah! And now we wanted to water those trees who line our property and we want to glorify Jesus whose branches have found their way into our life... May you be blessed. Amen. thbg
Perhaps you are decorating a pine tree about now, that it too has been cut down, killed to decorated your life and home and adorn you gifts. And when it is over put away in the trash or wood chipper to recycle. And we take the issue of this tree we have cut down to decorate our life and adorn our gifts, turn to bible,
["...Jeremiah 14:19 (Whole Chapter)
Hast thou utterly rejected Judah? hath thy soul lothed Zion? why hast thou smitten us, and there is no healing for us? we looked for peace, and there is no good; and for the time of healing, and behold trouble!..."]
This is when we did not understand god and his plan. And...
["...1 Samuel 8:7 (Whole Chapter)
And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them..."]
And these are the branches of the oak we want to prune and do away with. And...
["...Isaiah 53:3 (Whole Chapter)
He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not..."]
And we want to cut this pine tree and do away with him. And finally...
["...16Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste..."]
["...Psalm 118:22 (Whole Chapter)
The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner..."]
And comes to pass that the tree we steemed not has become the author of what hold everything together in heaven and on earth...!
May you be blessed. Amen.
And the Cross came to give us hope, because we are weak and fragile and physically easily toppled. For those in trying times, we have hope we are redeemed and God remains glorious. We turn to Romans 8:18-26,
["...18For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
19For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God.
20For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope,
21Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
22For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.
23And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.
24For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?
25But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.
26Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered..."]
And we hope that those that still doubt, come to the knowledge of the truth. We should not drag our feet anylonger in receiving the knowledge of God...
May you be blessed. Amen.