I’ve been enjoying a two week stay in Wales where I’m house and dog sitting for friends who are away on vacation. Their home is in the countryside. Every morning, Buddy the dog, and I stroll along the River Wye. It’s a lovely start to the day.
Most of the days have been filled with the warmth of sunshine, but during two days, the sky turned grey with clouds. Rain fell on occasion and the wind picked up, whipping through plants and trees. During one particular afternoon, I stood watching the power of the wind. It was lashing out through the trees, causing branches to go swirling in all directions. What drew my particular attention was the affects of wind among the smaller plants. The wind was mighty, and the rain pelted down; at times bending the plants over, causing the tops to scrape the earth. That’s when I remembered something that I had once read about plants in a storm.
I read about a group of botanists who conducted experiments involving plants. They put the plants in glass containers so they could easily see the roots of each plant. Then, in their garden laboratory, they created storm conditions, sending water and wind thrashing down and whipping about the plants. What they saw, I found amazing! When the storm had become its most ferocious, the botanists could actually see the roots move and stretch down, going deeper into the soil. Isn’t that amazing? Yet again, we see how our magnificent God has woven His truths into the fabric of all His nature.
You see, what God writes within nature, reflects His truth in our spiritual worlds. Haven’t you had times in life when storms of turmoil had reached a point that, like David in the Psalms, you cried out, “How long, Lord, will you wait? When, Lord, will you come to my rescue? Are you ever going to change my situation? How long, how long, how long? It’s a continuous, agonizing cry!
The storms of despair blow so ferociously, that the leaves of our content are plucked right away. Branches of trust are stripped bare! Winds of doubt bend us to the earth in our mournful plight. How long, Oh Lord, how long? But wait, our Lord has not forsaken us. He has not left us without means to grasp strength, courage, and inner peace. There is no storm that can literally blow us to bits. Nature shows us that truth. Like the plants, we can also, as it says in Colossians 2:7, Let your roots grow down into Him and draw up nourishment from Him, so you will grow in faith, strong and vigorous in the truth you were taught. Let your lives overflow with thanksgiving for all He has done.”
It’s so easy in a storm, to focus on what we see: winds of discouragement and rains of despair, threatening to rip away our peace and drown all our joy. It need not be, if we focus, not upon what we see with our eyes, but upon what we know in our hearts. Go to the root of the matter, and stretch your weary roots, deep into the soil of God’s love. Draw upon His nourishment. Remind yourself of His guidance in past storms. Winds and rains of frustration and tears of heartache may batter and bend you, but they need never break you. Let your roots go down deep, and draw from the richness of God’s own wisdom and guidance. He is there in the sunshine of our lives, and He is there in the storms of our lives. He is the very soil in which our roots go down deep, and they hang on, bending but never breaking.