If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small [Proverbs 24:10].

The Tale of Two Trees

While working in the yard, cleaning up after several days of heavy rain and storms, I noticed two mature trees I planted years before – although, one was leaning into the other one. I thought that was weird because I planted them both the same way. They both appeared to be growing as they should be. Naturally, I presumed both would have equally strong root systems. Yet, I could easily push the “leaner” back and forth. The storms saturated the ground-level soil and loosened the tree’s surface-level root system. Unlike its counterpart, the leaning tree was vulnerable because it didn’t grow roots down into deeper soil. It took the storm to expose the tree’s weakness.

It made me think of the Biblical story of building a house on the sand or digging down deep to stabilize the foundation on the bedrock.

If this tree would have sent its roots down deep, it would have remained sturdy in spite of the wind, rain, and storms. But being superficial, it had no strength to resist the storms and became vulnerable. The steady tree took the more difficult path of sending roots down deep into the soil. The “leaner” took the easy route of spreading roots horizontally in the more shallow, moist soil. Both looked the same – until the storm hit.

A Deeper, Everlasting Water Source

Sending spiritual roots down deep into God’s Word helps us weather life’s storms. By delighting in God’s Word and constantly meditating on it, we become like trees planted by rivers of water – fruitful and thriving even in times of drought [Psalm 1:2-3]. By placing our trust and hope in God as the Sovereign Orchestrator, we become trees planted by His living water. This helps removes fear and anxiety when life’s dry spells or storms arrive. We stand tall and continue yielding fruit [Jeremiah 17:7-8]. Instead of leaning or withering, we are fruitful trees with root systems deep into the water source that “flows from the sanctuary” [Ezekiel 47:12]. Seeking God’s deeper water source and bedrock strengthens our faith, anchors our spiritual roots, and makes us fruitful in spite of our circumstances.

So, let us send our roots ever deeper and deeper! May we spend quality time reading, memorizing, and studying God’s Word. When the storms arrive, we will stand strong, unwavering, being grounded and rooted in Him.

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