A Homeless Man’s Wisdom

Cursed is the one who trusts in human strength and the abilities of mere mortals.
        His very heart strays from the Eternal.
     He is like a little shrub in the desert that never grows;
        he will see no good thing come his way.
    He will live in a desert wasteland,
        a barren land of salt where no one lives.
     But blessed is the one who trusts in Me alone;
        the Eternal will be his confidence.
    He is like a tree planted by water,
        sending out its roots beside the stream.
    It does not fear the heat or even drought.
        Its leaves stay green and its fruit is dependable, no matter what it faces. 
Jeremiah 17:7-8

churchDisaster comes to the one who trusts in others – or herself.

But she – she who places her identity, security, future in her Maker – she is like a flourishing tree.

I love my Maker, I really do.  I’m slowly understanding the Gospel in more authentic ways even though I gave Him my heart years and years ago.  And yet, I live out the contrast mentioned in Jeremiah almost daily.

My mind knows Strength.  Safety. Forgiveness.  Yet I run to others’ opinions – or to my own achievements – again and again.  I long to be vibrant and fruitful, to be worth something.  But my focus is skewed again, for it’s really not about me at all.  Ultimately, my story’s not about me.

I invite struggle into my life – a desert wasteland – when I equip myself with others and their orientations, philosophies, perspectives.

But she who finds her security and wisdom in the Eternal – she holds no fear in her heart.  No matter what it faces.

I took this picture a few years ago when celebrating our fifteenth anniversary in San Antonio.  When we first arrived at our hotel, I peered out the window only to find this scene.  A tree hugged by the very house of God.  A tree planted by Water.

But it was late at night when we arrived, and a homeless man was lying down on the steps of the church, nestled into the door while he slept.  He got it.

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