So I’m back! Whew–last week, well…it sucked. I was stuck in bed most of the week, with spurts of energy to maybe get some ministry work done, and perhaps clean a few dishes–perhaps! And I’ve sincerely missed writing, and hearing comments and stories. Friday I finally felt better, and got some things accomplished, but not nearly as much as I wanted to, or needed to.
By Saturday afternoon I was completely discouraged. So much still to be done, my sinus infection was getting the best of me, the time was slipping away. I said to my husband [in my whiny voice, of course] ” If only I could be not so human, if only I could be a superhuman and get everything done and not feel bad or get tired.”
These sorts of thoughts plague me. The sort of thoughts that try to convince me that I shouldn’t have needs or wants. Or that I should do more or be more. Especially with writing. I love writing, but am always faced with the fear of doing well, affecting people in the “right” way, not being too deep, not being to shallow. Oh and my poor human children, who fight and hate cleaning their rooms, and don’t seem to really “get” everything I try to tell them about Jesus. And then there is my house…sigh…it’s the 16th of January and my Christmas tree is still up and I have no immediate plan of action to take it down, but it stares me in the face every time I climb up and down my stairs. It looks at me with those twinkling
eyes lights, tired of doing its job, needing a break until November, at least. If only I could be something more, something different, something better.
Then I think of a tree. A tree is a tree. It is perfectly content being a tree. A tree does not try to be a rose, or a bush. It does not try to pretend it does not need sunlight, water and soil. A tree finds contentment in its own bark and branches and leaves. It stands firm in its place, because it isn’t trying to be something it’s not. And because it’s confident in its identity, it’s able to grow strong, with deep roots and a steady foundation. And when the wind blows, the tree may bend, but it does not break.
Oh, to be a tree! To be content being Tiffany. To be someone who does not try to be like my neighbor or my friend at church. To be someone who does not deny my needs, and is completely confident that I’m a child of God. Oh to be someone who is firm in my faith in Christ, and will continue to grow strong with confidence that I am exactly the person I should be. To be someone who can sustain difficulty and sickness and Christmas trees up until the end of January (or maybe February) and it not break my spirit.
God desires for each of us to know that we can be a strong tree:
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the LORD
for the display of his splendor. Isaiah 61:3
He desires us to be completely content being the person HE created, but that takes a great faith that He knows better than us. Even more, it requires faith to believe that who we are in Christ is right and what the world says we should be is wrong:
For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be. Psalm 139:13-16
Being a child of God has its privileges, and we can have the confidence to walk a privileged life:
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved. Ephesians 1:3-6
And with that confidence of being adopted into the family of Christ, I can constantly grow strong with Christ as my foundation:
By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as a wise builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should build with care. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. I Corinthians 3:10-11
And regardless of my circumstances, death, illness, a house gone a mess, writing that sucks, nothing can destroy me or my spirit if I choose to remain in Christ:
We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. II Corinthians 4:8-9
So as I begin a new week, I have no reason to not look at a tree who is a tree and be inspired. For when I look at a reflection of myself in a mirror I can have complete confidence that a Tiffany is a tiffany and a _____(your name here) ____ is a _____(your name here, in lower case)_____. That we are each created to be exactly who we are in Christ, right now in this moment, accepted by Him, loved by Him, strengthened by Him, growing in Him. And tomorrow we can do it all over again. And you and I will be okay no matter what comes our way.
How bout you? Can you accept that a tree is a tree and you are a you? Let me know, I wanna pray for you.