7 “At least there is hope for a tree: If it is cut down, it will sprout again, and its new shoots will not fail. 8 Its roots may grow old in the ground and its stump die in the soil, 9 yet at the scent of water it will bud and put forth shoots like a plant.
Job 14:7- 9 (NIV)
I have an artificial small tree in my living room and it’s so amazing how every time someone visits me for the first time, they ask about the tree. The intriguing thing about my artificial tree is that it has a dry looking stem and green leaves, which in my mind symbolizes everything Job 14 was trying to say. That even after a bad experience, when you seem down and out, a little ray of hope can revive your spirit like a cut down stump nourished with water.
Growing up in sub-Sahara Africa I have seen this over and over again. Trees are cut down, plants are uprooted and many times left in its place to dry out. It begins to dry until the rain comes. Then everything that has seemed dry and dead comes alive after the showers. Like every cut down tree, a wounded soul feels dry, even dead sometimes. Life often sniffs the life out of you and you feel like this has to be the end. The only way to restore life is allowing the words of life into your soul.
How do you get the word of life in your soul? How do you re-energize your spirit to come alive again? “The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you-they are full of the Spirit and life”. John 6:63 (NIV) spells it out nicely, the word of God – the bible, is full of life giving words. So if you need a boost, if you need to re-energize your spirit, if you need to come alive again, you need to allow the word of God into your soul. You need to read the bible.
The book of Hebrews 4:14 (NIV) describes it like this, “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart”. Isn’t that refreshing to hear? That you have within your grasp something that is alive and active? Something that can penetrate your body, soul and spirit? That sounds like great news to me, something worth trying, something worth sharing.
Here’s a thought, draw up a reading plan or download a bible app this April and read the word of life for yourself. See what God has to say about you, your life and his plans for your future. Explore the lives of other people, ordinary people who have had their lives revived like water on a dry tree and learn how they did it. Take April as the month to discover for yourself the power that lies in the word of God. If you ask me, I’d say reading and doing what’s written in the pages of the bible has been one of my most successful winning formulas in life.
Try it and tell me what happens.