When the seasons began to change from summer to fall, our oak trees did what they always do...drop hundreds of acorns around our yard. Usually this is an event that goes unnoticed. However this year there was an abnormally large amount of acorns around the yard. So much so that my kids could run, slide and roll across them. I even found that it was risky to stand under one of the huge trees because it was for certain that you would get hit in the head by atleast one of the acorn seeds! And the squirrels haven't seemed to be working as hard as they usually do!
Then a few days ago I read an article in the newspaper. The writer was talking about how the oaks are producing an abnormally high number of acorns this year. He noted that this usually happens due to stressful events on the trees such as major storms, heat waves or droughts, all of which we've had here in the last 4 years. Because of the stress on the trees, the oaks drop huge amounts of acorns to ensure that more trees are produced.
I marveled at how God does things. Our Creator made it so that when oaks endure stress, they produce a large acorn crop. What a back yard reminder of what our Awesome Father does in our lives. He uses our stressful circumstances to produce the fruit of Jesus in and through us!
Romans 5:3-5 says "Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we
know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance,
character; and character, hope. And hope does not
disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy
Spirit, whom he has given us." NIV
Isn't it so comforting to know that the hard situations we go through are not in vain? There is a purpose to every trial and hardship we endure. Maybe the bills are behind, the kids are sick, your husband is without a job. Maybe there is no end in sight to a situation that is unbearable. Maybe you're wondering if you'll have food on the table next week. Precious sister, whatever trial you are in the midst of, turn your eyes to your Father and rejoice - because there is a purpose in the pain and trials. And although you might not be able to see the purpose or the fruit this side of Heaven, trust that He is teaching you perseverence which will equip you for other trials. And from the perseverence, He will be producing the character of Jesus in you. And from that character, He will be producing a hope that will not dissappoint you..." It's a rock solid hope, rooted firmly in Christ, and you can be sure to set your anchor in it!
Romans 15:13 "May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that
you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit."