The Truth is in the TREES!

After surviving the sub-zero temps of winter and trudging through mounds of snow, we’re anxious for spring! All winter long, many trees around us have been in a dormant stage….as a means of survival. Before we know it, the once-barren branches of winter will gradually blossom with budding leaves. Leaves that will pop with vibrant shades of GREEN. These are the trees we anxiously await for signs of change.

The official name for this kind of tree is deciduous.

These types of trees were designed by our creator to shed their leaves for part of the year. In our area of the country, these trees lose their leaves in the winter and re-grow them in the spring.  This re-growth process is the evidence that spring has arrived! But before we know it, these same leaves will slowly change. They’ll be splashed with bright autumn colors of red, orange and yellow. Then they’ll fade and wither to the ground again.

Deciduous trees are always changing. They never stay the same.

These deciduous trees are a symbol of US! We are constantly changing. Life is changing all around us with each passing season. We too have seasons where we’re thriving. Flourishing. Our fruit blooms vividly. Life is good. No complaints. But then the season changes. We barely survive the barrenness of a drought. Some seasons are mundane and we’re just surviving. Just when we grow comfortable with life as it is, things change. Again. And again.

But there’s another kind of tree we observe. The evergreen. Unlike the deciduous trees, the evergreens keep their leaves ALL YEAR LONG. Even through the most freezing temps and harsh winds of winter, these trees stay the same. Even in the heat of summer, they stay the same. They always keep their leaves!

The Evergreen trees are symbolic of our amazing God!  He. Never. Changes.

Our God is the same yesterday, today and always. Throughout every season of our life, He remains the same. Through the good, the bad and the ugly. He never changes. Even when life is swirling out of control before our very eyes? Even when the unthinkable happens? Even when we feel most unworthy and unlovable? Yes. You can count on it.

It gets even better. Don’t miss this!! Do you notice that the evergreen trees aren’t just contained in one place away from the deciduous trees? Look again…..

mixed trees              mixedtrees2

 

The evergreen trees are spread out among the deciduous trees. Mixed in with the barren trees of winter. I don’t think for a minute that this is random. It’s not an accident they are placed like this.

These trees point to a powerful truth:

GOD      IS       WITH       US!

If you look closely, this beautiful picture is all around us. Screaming silently for us to open our eyes and see this powerful symbol of how our incredible God is not watching us from afar in a distant land. He’s not planted in a separate location afraid to come in contact with us. He is truly WITH us.

Dead_tree

This picture is a powerful symbol of how we feel sometimes when life appears hopeless. Barren. No sign of life. No visible fruit. Yet surrounding this lifeless tree you see evergreens! Too many to count. Looks like they go on and on. Forever.

How can we look past this and not see the personification of God speaking loud and clear through His creation? This picture above is shouting for all to hear, “I see you. I am with you.” 

Once God opened my eyes to His truth through the 2 kinds of trees, I can’t keep it to myself. It’s hard to even express it completely with words. (I’ve almost driven off the road a few times gazing at these trees!)

I pray He will open your eyes too, dear friend.

Look all around you and never forget that no matter what season of life you are in, whether it’s thriving or barren, God is with you.

Hebrews 13:8  “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.”

Matthew 1:23  “….and they will call him Emmanuel, which means ‘God with us’ “

 

Blessings to you!

Lisa Preuett

 

 

When Change is Hard

This is a season of transitions. A new school year for my 5th grade daughter. A new school building in a different location.  A new job for my husband.  A new women’s Bible study. Everything…is…NEW!

Transitions are HARD. Even though you transition to something good, it can still be challenging. Why is that? After much reflection on this, I’m come to the conclusion that transitions are hard because you’re trading familiar for unfamiliar. Predictability for unpredictability. Same old routine for a new schedule.

What used to work doesn’t work anymore. What used to fit doesn’t fit anymore. What used to make sense might now seem chaotic.

Transition is the gradual period of time in between 2 seasons of life. Making the transition from one to the other involves CHANGE.

Change is HARD!

Just as the seasons change, so our lives change as well. But the seasons don’t change overnight. We don’t go to bed one summer night and wake up to trees completely splashed with vibrant fall colors the next morning. No. The seasons change gradually….one leaf at a time. You start to notice a little bit at a time. A tree seems to have one drop of paint on it that can barely be noticed. A few weeks later the same tree appears to have more colors than it did before. One morning you wake up and the weather is a bit on the cool side. Just a tinge. Not anything drastic. But you notice a difference. It’s very gradual.   And before you know it, the warm-humid days stop altogether and you realize the cooler temps are more consistent.

This is TRANSITION!

I’m so thankful that when God brings change He doesn’t expect us to completely change overnight. He shines His light on our heart to reveal something that needs to be addressed. Then He ever so gently whispers to our soul something that needs to change. These are some of the whispers I’m hearing lately from Him:

That behavior isn’t working for you. That attitude isn’t getting you anywhere. Those words aren’t building anyone up.

 We know something needs to change. But it starts with transition. Gradually we step out and trade a familiar behavior with something better. Maybe it’s just a tinge. Just a hint. Maybe nobody even notices anything different at first. But gradually over time as we genuinely surrender an area of our lives to Him, a new pattern emerges. And before we know it, we’ve transitioned into a new season of life. What was hard at first now comes natural. What seemed inconsistent now becomes a new norm.

With everything around us constantly changing, it points us to this simple, yet profound truth: Jesus does NOT change. Ever.

Our circumstances are always changing. He remains the same.

Our feelings frequently waver back and forth. He remains the same.

Our thoughts shift constantly throughout the day. He remains the same.

Our loved ones don’t respond the way we’d like. He remains the same.

Are you in a season of transition? Are you struggling with making a change in a certain area of your life? Be encouraged that it won’t happen overnight. Just like the leaves change gradually, your transition will take place one step at a time. Trust God as you navigate into the next season. Most of all, take courage in the fact that our God never changes! The same resurrection power that raised Jesus from the dead lives in us….. Today!

Hebrews 13:8 “Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever”

autumn leaves