‘They will be called Oaks of righteousness, a planting of YHWH for the display of his glory.” -Isaiah 61
The mighty oak, one of my favorite trees. Coming from a small acorn, which had to fall, break, root, and grow.
Oaks grow slowly, at their own pace, yet they surpass many trees in their strength, size, and lifespan.
Trees, like most of God’s creation, have always given me so much peace when I’m around them. As someone who struggles with anxiety, I often have found myself running to the forest for the comfort it brings. This is one of my quiet places where I find God waiting for me.
God is always speaking to me through the trees… maybe this is why I chose to have a branch put on my arm at age 18. God has given us a lot of truth to be found in trees, if we have the eyes to see, and the ears to hear.
Spiritually, we as humans are not much different than the trees God created: We grow where we are planted, adapting to our environment as we grow stronger through every season and storm. Our leaves may fall, and we must learn to let them go in their time. We may loose a few branches and limbs through the storms that we face in this life, but if our roots are deeply planted in the right soil, we will heal, restore, and grow in deeper wisdom and strength.
Unlike trees, our soil is not only one of the Earth. We find our soil in something other than the ground, and for me, my soil has always been my faith. Especially as someone who calls many places her ‘home’, my strongest roots are the ones that run deep in my belief.
I think this is true for many people, no matter what kind of person you are. Faith includes what we believe, and although it spiritually flows from the heart, we cultivate our ‘soil’ with our mind.
We have the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2), and we are called to live an abundant life. Jesus tells us in John 10:
“The enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy- but I have come that they might have life, and life abundantly“.
We find our abundant life through the fruit that comes naturally by abiding in the Spirit of Christ. This fruit is love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, kindness, and self control. These are the very things that the enemy is constantly trying to steal, kill, and destroy, especially as we live in a world full of negativity.
To abide in the Spirit, and cultivate this abundant life he has given us, we must be aware of our thoughts, for our thought nourish the soil in which we grow.
On July 1st God spoke to me of this Abundance, (you can read the word I felt by clicking here), and now I find this word for abundance being more: The true life Jesus came to give us; a life full of the fruit that comes only through resting in Him.
“I am the vine, and you are the branches. If you remain in me, and I in you, you will bear much fruit (…) this is my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit” – John 15:5
You are his righteous oak tree. A planting of YHWH that through you, this world may see his glory. (Isaiah 61) So as I end this blog post today, I just want to ask you to join me as I move forward into August, taking every thought captive to Christ, (2 Corinthians 10) and meditating on things that nourish this soil in which we grow (Philippians 4:8); Strengthing our branches to abide deeper in the vine to bare much fruit to fully live the abundant life God desires for you us live.