Our Faith(fulness) Tested

The Tree

“While we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen.  For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”             2Corinthians 4:18

For so much of this spring I have looked out my window at an enormous tree whose branches, though reaching up, have had no buds or even the slightest sign of life in them.  Elsewhere I see the evidence of spring as buds start to form and the small trees receive their leaves.  The question often comes to my mind, “What about this one Lord?”  I am reminded about Peter who asked the Lord a very similar question in John 21:20-22.  The Lord’s response rings true today “….what is that to you?  You follow Me.” 

 I praise God that He uses the simplest things to drive home the biggest points in our lives.  Two very definite things the Lord has spoken to my heart this spring as I have watched this tree in front of our house. 

First, Jesus has taught me about faith.  On the outside the tree appeared dead, but this is only what we see with our eyes.  Inside the Lord is sustaining this tree and bringing up new life within it.  Often I have cried out to the Lord and ask what are we doing wrong that things are so dead; our roots go down and are arms go up and yet we do not see the life we long for.  Again I hear my Masters voice as He reminds me that He sees what is on the inside and though I cannot see it, He very well knows the work He is doing.  Do I trust Him as this tree? YES!  This is where our faith finds feet.  When I sow seed in my garden I do not sit up all night and day fretting about whether the seed will grow, I trust the Lord to do what He has always done. 

Looking back over the year I see the way God has used us to sow much seed in His field.  I think of the hundreds of tracts and bible study cards (which have scripture on the back) that have been handed out and I know that the Lord’s Word does not return void.  We must trust God that if He has begun a work, no matter what things look like through our eyes, He will be faithful to complete it (Philippians 1:6).

 Secondly I am reminded that the Lord has a special work for each of us and His desire is our faithfulness no matter the outward appearance.  It would be easy to look around at all the plants and trees with buds and leaves and thus assume that the tree in front of the house was dead.  Yet we know that we are not to compare ourselves by ourselves but our true worth is found in the work that is done for Christ.  God has not called us to this city to do the work of a fellow servant but that which He has assigned to us. 

What a big field Worcester is and oh the many workers that are needed to love this city for Christ.  Thus it does not matter what another is doing, only that we are faithful to what God has called us to do.  Our prayer is that the Lord would show us the portion of His field that He has assigned us to work.

“The LORD will guide you continually, and satisfy your soul in drought, and strengthen your bones; you shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water whose waters do not fail.”      Isaiah 58:11

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