Isaiah 61:3b, to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor.
Clearly, we can see that in life we will all have times of mourning and despair as well as joy and praise and we have the opportunity to grow closer to Him through both.
Have you ever seen a huge Oak tree? They can become pretty massive and their wood is very strong. It’s the type of wood that is durable and sturdy. An oak tree doesn’t grow to that height overnight and hopefully, wherever it grows, its roots go deep! One evening a few years ago we had a crazy storm here in our area and several trees in our neighborhood that were just massive were uprooted! It was a mess and very sad. The root systems were massive and yet when you looked at them you could see that they grew out more than they did down deep. In Tennessee, there’s a lot of rock and in most places, you can’t dig more than maybe a couple of feet deep, at best, without hitting the rock, therefore the roots of most trees aren’t going to grow very deep. So, 100 miles an hour winds or more are no match for them. As we go through life we are faced with all types of experiences and situations and those things will either grow your relationship with Him deeper and stronger or you will find when those storms come again that your roots are shallow and you may find yourself teetering in your faith. God wants to walk with you through the good, the bad, and the ugly! He wants your life to be full of Him! He wants you to be a planting of His that will display His beauty and splendor because you are full of all of who He is! You have to be intentional in pursuing your walk with God. Seek Him in all that you do, don’t leave Him on a shelf somewhere until disaster strikes and you need Him. The closer you walk with Him the more you realize you don’t want to live one day without His presence whether it is a great fun-filled day or a day that drops you to your knees, His presence is what makes the difference!
Sometimes life just seems to keep coming at you! It’s like you can’t even make it through one thing and something else comes and plows you down! Cling to Him! You can be angry, you can be in mourning, you can be frustrated and you can pour your heart out to Him with every bit of that, but cling to Him! Don’t let go! Cling to Him knowing that He sees and He has a plan but you must stick with Him in order to achieve those plans!
Fortunately, there are also times when you find yourself rising to the top and feeling blessed and those are times you need to cling to Him as well! Don’t forget who brought you there. Keep Him first place. Ask Him how you can continue to grow through this time! Ask Him what His dreams are for your life? Is there something new or different? Is there an area you can serve Him in? Don’t waste the time of blessing on meaningless fruitless things! By all means, enjoy the time and relish the blessing, just don’t miss out on the blessings of His presence and the opportunity to grow closer to Him!
Every season is an opportunity to grow closer to Him! Don’t miss out! Ask Him today to show you His plan and His dreams for your life, knowing that in Him His best is yet to come!
Quote: “First we make our attitudes. Then our attitudes make us.” Dennis Waitley