Cleaning up a tree-lawn for an elderly man for outreach purposes.
While cleaning up the tree-lawn, there was a particular tree that was bent over. Much like a palm tree bends in the storm, except it never stood back upright so it had to be tied up. It reminded me of what the Bible says about palm trees and the saints of God.
The Holy Spirit in Psalms says,
"The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon. Those that be planted in the house of The LORD shall flourish in the courts of our God. They shall still bring forth fruit in old age; they shall be fat and flourishing; to shew that The LORD is upright: He is my Rock, and there is no unrighteousness in Him." [Psa 92:12-15]
At least one thing unique about palm trees is their ability to survive storms. Given their location that is important. The way the palm tree’s trunk grows makes it more flexible than a standard tree, so it is able to bend without snapping in high winds. In a similar manner, we as Christians, saints of God, want to be flexible in storms. When the raging winds of life blow and we find ourselves in a “storm” we want to be flexible: bending but not breaking.
The Lord tells us that those who are “planted in the house of The LORD shall flourish in the courts of our God;” they “shall flourish like the palm tree.” For us to survive the heavy winds of life, we must be planted firmly in the house of God; we must be diligent and zealous to abide in Jesus, for it is in His presence that we thrive and find our strength.
The palm tree is well suited for its location, and likewise we should be too; for Jesus has told us, “In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” And in Acts Luke writes,
"Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God." [Acts 14:22]
This life is like a tropical climate, which sees many storms. But for those who abide in the presence of God, they will be like palm trees, bending but not breaking. In the storms of our life, we can trust in The LORD on High, who “is mightier than the noise of many waters, yea, than the mighty waves of the sea.” There is no one like our Father, who is strong and faithful, who is in complete control of each storm. Psalms 89 comforts and encourages us with these words,
"For who in the heaven can be compared unto The LORD? Who among the sons of the mighty can be likened unto The LORD? God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the saints, and to be had in reverence of all them that are about Him. O LORD God of hosts, who is a strong LORD like unto thee? Or to thy faithfulness round about thee? Thou rulest the raging of the sea: when the waves thereof arise, thou stillest them." [Psa 89:5-9]
And we can take courage from the gospels as well. For when “there arose a great storm of wind” then Christ “arose” and “rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.” [Mark 4:35-41] In each storm, Jesus arises to our rescue. We can rest in this hope and with joy and endurance go through each storm of life, bending like a palm tree, knowing that Jesus will not let us break if we, by His grace, abide in His presence.
Post: Boundaries on the Waters