Writer, teacher and Public Speaker

Monday, February 18, 2013

Stump Growth

I recently watched a news story about a project that endeavors to save the amazing Redwood and Sequoia trees for the future. If you've ever driven through the national parks that are home to these trees you cannot help but appreciate the vision of the founder, David Milarch.

In the NBC news clip, the reporter stood in front of a stump that was thirty feet across. The one hundred and thirty year old stump had once been the foundation to a tree that was 'forty stories tall'. Today around the base of the seemingly dead stump, fresh green sprigs grow. The "stump growth" is harvested and taken to the lab, and from this they (clone) and plant new trees.

I know nothing of the man behind the science, or the organization, Archangel, Ancient Tree Archive. But I appreciate their futuristic vision. Long after this generation is gone, another generation will appreciate the fruits of their labor.

In the kingdom of God much of what we are called to do is for the next generation. For them to benefit from the fruit of our vision, we must have hope for the future. We cannot allow the dark clouds of information to obscure our vision. We must hold tightly to 'the substance of things hoped for.' These fast growing Redwood seedlings are the substance of things hoped for.

Life can cut us down and all that is left of our dreams are stumps, but that does not have to be the end. Because God can bring life back to that which has died.

Even in the ancient book of Job we find the same wisdom:

"For there is hope for a tree,
When it is cut down, that it will sprout again,
And its shoots will not fail.
"Though its roots grow old in the ground
And its stump dies in the dry soil,
At the scent of water it will flourish
And put forth sprigs like a plant (14:7-9)

At the very scent of water there will be new growth. Have your dreams died? Do you feel as though everything has been cut down, and all that is left is a stump? Lift up your head, look to the One who is the living water.

He is the one who repairs, restores and resurrects. "A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out. In faithfulness he will bring forth justice..." (Isaiah 42:3) 

Imagine! The One who conceived of the Redwood and the Sequoia tree; the God of the universe and endless galaxies desires to breathe new life into us. He makes all things new. May His fountains flow over those who have lost hope - may what seems as a lifeless stump flourish into new growth! For the sake of the earth and the next generation. For the sake of His Glory, or as Bach might write, "Soli Deo gloria."

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