February, what a beautiful time of year to celebrate love; praising the Lord for His love!
As the trees stand tall with their bare limbs, the root system is in search for moisture and nutrients during this winter season. The roots do grow when temperatures are favorable. It’s necessary for the tree to go through the various seasons of life.
As with trees, we have been given a life span with seasons to grow and be nurtured with the proper nutrients. For me, the nutrients are studying the word of God, worship, family, friends, exercise and good healthy foods. However, these life giving nutrients were not always the ones that fed my soul. Let me share with you my journey that began 52 years ago in Decatur, Georgia.
I was adopted by lovely parents and lived on Blueberry Trail. What an adorable street, right? Life was full of great community and joyful memories. I had a lot going for me.. lots of friends, cheering, drill team, student senate, homecoming queen and wonderful godly Christian parents. I learned about Jesus and asked Jesus to come into my life with my youth pastor, Mark Rutland. Unfortunately, after giving my life to Christ, I didn't know how to walk with Jesus daily. My body like a tree needed nourishment, good discipleship, fellowship with strong believers, good nutrition and proper care physically.
In the next season in my life, leaving home for college I experienced a search for nutrients, the approval of others. In high school all the popularity could not truly satisfy my soul long term. So, I continued my search and found the wrong nutrients only to find myself broken and ashamed in areas of my physical life.
Little did I know, but this would be the beginning of the season I would liken to Spring, new mercies and growth. Shortly after college, I met my husband Mike at the church we both grew up in. Mike and I fell in love while working with the youth at our church. However, there was one problem. I felt like a withered, broken tree inside with shame. Mike would never ever want to marry me. In my eyes, I was not the Beautiful tree in the garden that I wanted Mike to have. I knew in my spirit I had to share with Mike my broken past.
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. “ 1 John 1:9
So, after much prayer and agony I shared my past with my best friend, Mike. After tears of pain and looking into Mike's eyes, we took some time that afternoon to digest our past failures with one another. We came back together that evening with joyful clean hearts.
"Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me." Psalm 51:10
My sweet Mike looked at me and said, "I love you and will you marry me?"
The story does stop here but continues today. This is only a picture of what God gives us for Eternity. He sent us Christ, is only Son to die on the cross for me and you. If we say yes to Christ's call; we are Christ's bride for Eternity.
Jesus is the tree of life.
" Blessed are those who wash their robes that they may have the right to the Tree of Life and May enter by the gates into the city." Revelation 22:14
May Jesus be lifted high for His saving grace and clothing His believers with the Garment of Salvation.
Jesus offers Comfort instead of Mourning
A Beautiful Headdress instead of Ashes
Oil of Gladness instead of Mourning
A Garment of Praise instead of a faint spirit
and be called Oaks of Righteousness
the Planting of the Lord that he may be glorified