07 June, 2005

This is what the LORD says:
"Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who depends on flesh for his strength and whose heart turns away from the LORD. He will be like a bush in the wastelands; he will not see prosperity when it comes. He will dwell in the parched places of the desert, in a salt land where no one lives.
"But blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit."

Jeremiah 17:5-8

Have you ever stopped to look at a tree? Not a dinky one just planted, but one that shades the entire street, its branches covering every inch, able to block out the sun, or turn you into a human snowman if you happen by at the right time. It’s roots run deep – it does not fear the wind, rain, or woodcutter – but it will not be brought down without a fight. I think of the image in the first Lord of the Rings were it takes an army and many, many ropes to bring down one single tree because its roots run that deep… That is how we can be if we trust in the Lord – that is enough to quiet me.

I came across this verse the other day during my quiet time, and it struck me. I realized - thanks to this and conversations with women more wise than myself – that I really am dependent on other people for my worth. I look to them to tell me who I am, and if I am doing things well… If they consent then I am happy and complete, but if, for any reason, that approval fails I am in a complete funk. How wrong! I am coming to the realization, again and again, as it hits me like a 2x4, that I need to rely only on Him and when I do I will never be disappointed. It sounds trite, or cliché, but it’s so true. We look to positions, friends, a boy, a plan, to give us what we want. But if those things, those people, could fill us what would the point of heaven be? The things we try to trust down here are incomplete and will therefore always leave us feeling empty in the end.

Okay, I know this sounds like a public service announcement, but it is the most basic concept that we forget too easily.

Anyway, I want to be a tree planted by the river, unafraid of the flood.

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