Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Green (10/22/09)
TITLE: LEAVES ALWAYS GREEN
By Carol Penhorwood
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“But blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” Jeremiah 17:7-8 (New International Version)
Words flowed freely and often. In fact, they were almost an annoyance, for they most often came just as I was about to fall asleep. I tried to keep a pad, pen and flashlight close by so that I would not disturb my husband. Then I could just jot down the ideas as they came. Often they came so fast and furiously I knew if I didn't get up and write them down, they would be gone forever. (Why couldn't this happen during the day?) Once the flow began, I had to follow it to its inevitable conclusion, which could take hours, and I could kiss sleep goodbye. “My leaves were always green.”
In the weeks and months following an auto accident, I would find myself often lying down to relieve the pain I was experiencing. I began to steep myself in worship music and Scripture, and soon found words coming to mind that had to be written down. Thus began my writing career and the long nights losing sleep.
This continued for several years and then came a long drought. There were many reasons for this as I look back. But fear reared its ugly head. Would I ever write again? And now, many years later, again I find God whispering in my ear to do something with all the poetry, devotionals, and other pieces He has given me, and to begin writing again. But it has been so long—is the gift still there?
Then God gently reminded me that He is my source. “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord.” I can never be the “tree whose leaves are always green” unless I trust in Him. My gift has never been mine. And only as I once again steep myself in Him and His Word will I regain my creativity and imagination. My confidence must be in Him to inspire me. If, in fact, He is the one nudging me, I can be confident He will follow through to use me to encourage others, which has always been my prayer.
But my best years are behind me, I argued in my mind. It never fails to excite me when God speaks so directly to my heart:
“The righteous will flourish like a palm tree, they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon; planted in the house of the Lord, they will flourish in the courts of our God. They will still bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green, proclaiming, “The Lord is upright; he is my Rock, and there is no wickedness in him.” Psalm 92:12-15 (New International Version) The cedar of Lebanon represents eternity, strength and endurance. How does a cedar of Lebanon grow? The wood is decay resistant and never eaten by insect larvae. * May I not allow the enemy to eat away at what God is trying to do in my life by allowing doubts and uncertainties to enter in and by refreshing myself in the River of Life.
For God Himself is my source and He has planted me like a tree by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. I need not fear when the heat comes. I have no worries in a year of drought. My confidence is in Him. I will never fail to bear fruit. My leaves will always be green.
“He who believes in Me—who cleaves to and trusts in and relies on Me—as the Scripture has said, Out from his innermost being springs and rivers of living water shall flow (continuously).” John 7:38 (Amplified)
Yes, my leaves will always be green.
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