I visited my family in Ireland a while back. My husband and I planned to sightsee during the trip. As we strolled down a country lane in a rural area of Ireland, we came across a beautiful, old tree. How long had the tree stood there, I wondered. Carved initials in the trunk marked memories of visits by those in love. As I studied the tree, I noticed something different. A section of barbed wire entangled and dug deep into the trunk of the ancient tree.
That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither– whatever they do prospers.Psalm 1:3
The wire snarled around the base. I guessed a wire fence once surrounded the tree years. Maybe back when it was just a sapling. Over the years, as the tree grew, the trunk grew past the fencing. The tree could not escape the barbed wire, so it just grew up around it. We finished our walk and headed off to the next event.
Over the next few days, my thoughts drifted back to the tree. I glanced at the photo of the tree many times. Why did this tree fascinate me so much? I felt the Holy Spirit nudging me to dig deeper to find out what God wanted to reveal to me. For a long time, I could not figure it out.
Soon, I realized the tree represented man. After birth, we become part of a family. Our family roots anchor us. As we grow, people come into our lives and write their names on our hearts, which is like those on the tree’s trunk. Sometimes, we need to be pruned of dead or rotten parts so that we can continue to grow tall and strong. Even though pruning can be painful, it improves our growth and makes us healthier. When we are old, our bodies resemble the old trunk of the tree, knotted and scarred.
Barbs of Sins
But what does the barbed wire on the tree trunk represent? I recognized the barbed wire depicted sin in our lives. When young, we see this sin all around us. Like the fence, our families surround us to protect us. They take us to church to learn about Christ and His love for us. And, they hope we will learn right from wrong and how to avoid sin in our lives. But, as we grow, sin creeps closer until it finally reaches our trunk.
The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and the one who is wise saves lives.Proverbs 11:30
Sin entangles us just a little at first. We tell the first little lie at school, and the barbed wire tightens around our trunk. Next, we find ourselves cheating on our taxes. The barbed wire tightens and cuts deeper with each sin. Some people try drugs or alcohol to escape reality. They become hooked, and the wire embeds itself deeper. Soon, we can’t separate the trunk of our lives from the barbed wire of sin entangling us.
One day we realize our sins have entangled our lives to the point we cannot fix it by ourselves. We need Jesus, the master gardener, to help us. We need Him to prune us until we can reclaim our lives from the grasp of sin. Some of our sins become so entrenched that we never get rid of them entirely. Sometimes, God leaves a piece of the wire buried in our trunk, so we keep turning to Him. Some sins leave deep scars, but God helps us overcome those also.
We need Jesus, the master gardener, to help us. We need Him to prune us until we can reclaim our lives from the grasp of sin. Click To Tweet
Only when we accept Christ and confess our sins can the healing begin. Only He can trim sin out of our trunks and put us on the road to healing and happiness. Even if some of the barbwire remains, God lifts us and gives us that passes all human understanding. He does not promise an easy or painless path, but He does promise us peace and life eternal. We need to turn our sins over to Him daily.
Yvonne M Morgan, #Blogger, #Speaker, #Writer
Matthew 28:19 “Therefore, GO and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.”
100% of the proceeds from sales of my book, Turning Mountains Into Molehills, go to help the orphans at Orphan Relief Effort, Inc