Looking to the tree

Looking to the tree

Its the week of Easter....some people call that Holy Week...other people called it Passion Week...other people just think about rabbits, eggs, and peeps (mmm...peeps...).  For me, its a week to look to what Jesus did for me.  I have to realize that John 3:16 is really MY story.  For God so loved ME that He sent His only son that if I believe in Him, then I can live forever.  Such a great promise.  I don't really separate the events of the cross from the empty tomb either.  Its one story...you simply can't have one without the other.  I have to look to the cross if I want to look to the empty tomb.  As I look to the cross, as I look to the tree, it makes me think more about the church.  Jesus told us to take up our crosses and follow Him, thats the church.  Because of HIS cross, we take up our crosses and we as the church follow.  So what kind of wood is your cross made up of?  For me, its my favorite tree, the aspen. Here's why:

  1. Aspens are native to cold, mountainous regions and cannot really live long in any other environment.  That happens to be my favorite kind of region, but its also a kind of region that I don't currently, nor have I ever, lived in.  In other words, my aspen is living in a world that is was never created to live in and is slowly dying because of its exposure to that environment.  That's my story here on earth....this world is not my home, heaven is.
  2. Aspens grow stronger from fire.  Its a necessary and natural part of the tree's growth.  That's my story too!  When I pass through the fires, the flames will not overcome me (Isaiah 43).  What was meant to harm me, will be used by God to accomplish what is now being done (Genesis 50:20).  God uses the fire to remove the things that will choke out life from the aspens, and they survive because their roots grow deep, below the heat of the fire.
  3. Aspens grow from one seedling, and have one common root system.  Each aspen tree's roots are linked to the roots of all other aspen trees.  What a beautiful picture of the church!  We have one common seed, the Almighty God, and our roots are planted in Him as we grow upward and outward together.  And aspen forests are always growing...just like the church is supposed to be.
  4. Aspen tree themselves have a minimal life span, but their roots can live for long amounts of time.  Scientists estimate an aspen colony in Utah to be up to 80,000 years old.  What are we doing thats going to last long after we're gone?  How are we living as a church thats not about us about Him?

So there's my ramblings this week....Look to the tree...look to the cross...and for me, my cross is made of aspen wood.

5 comments (Add your own)

1. hollypoe wrote:
Beautiful and thought provoking. I'll be thinking about the type of tree that I am. Maybe a willow. They sway and bend.....as far as you can bend without breaking. God has allowed me to bend....but never let me break. Maybe a weeping willow as I've shed plenty of tears as I've been in life's storms. Thanks for your insight my friend!

Mon, March 25, 2013 @ 10:51 AM

2. DeeDee Brinkman wrote:
Praying that my life will reflect that of an Aspen tree...that through the fires of life, my faith will stand firm. Praise Jesus this isn't our home!

Mon, March 25, 2013 @ 11:55 AM

3. Deanna Denney wrote:
Praying that I will be as the mighty Oak, standing when all else around me fails. Onward and upward bound!

Mon, March 25, 2013 @ 12:26 PM

4. LaSonya Blankenship wrote:
So beautiful! I'm so looking forward to the glory days of heaven when the 'fires' of life will be no more:)!!!

Mon, March 25, 2013 @ 12:45 PM

5. Beverly Williams wrote:
Such great words from a great man. You always give us something to REALLY think about & apply to our life. God Bless You, Brad Butler.
Keep these blogs coming !

You are right. The fires hurt, but in the end make us strong. How can we help others if we have never been through the fire ?

" For I know the plans I have for you," says the Lord, " Plans to not harm you, but plans to give you a hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

Tue, March 26, 2013 @ 6:52 AM

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Let the one who serves serve in the strength which God supplies that in everything God may get the glory through Jesus Christ.

1 Peter 4:11