One year, about 3 or 4 years ago, my parents gave us a peach tree for my birthday. I was thrilled because I know how amazing it can be to have a fruit tree in your own backyard. As I’ve written here before, my parents have some very fruitful fruit trees where they live.
They have always had fruit trees. I can even remember, as a little kid in California, going out to the tangerine tree to pick a tangerine for lunch. I don’t know about you, but I think that kind of “living off the land” is so very cool. Even if it’s just technically “snacking off the land”.
So, back to our story. Last year, my peach tree blossomed for the first time in three years. To commemorate that occasion, my peach tree bloomed three blossoms. Yes, three. Along came a strong March wind, and then there was one. That little blossom held on, and by harvest time, we had the best peach I have ever tasted. We divided it up into 6 or 7 pieces so each of us could have a taste.
Fast forward to this morning. I looked out in the yard and it looks like we are going to have a ton of blossoms on that little tree this year. It looks amazing (and delicious!). It reminded me of one of my favorite passages in the Bible. It is Jeremiah 17:7-9.
Here it is:
7 “But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD,
whose confidence is in Him.
8 They 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.”
I just love that verse, because it gives the picture of resting in the Lord, not striving. That fruit tree in the verse doesn’t have to go out and find the water. It is constantly immersed in it, and therefore, it doesn’t even have the chance to not grow and be fruitful. It just does, because it is constantly camped out by the life source.
Thinking of that reminded me of how, when I was little, my parents also had mint plants. They would plant them by the outside faucet, where the hose attached. The constant drips that came from that hose where it attached to the faucet provided an environment for the mint plants to thrive. We were never without mint plants as long as they were planted by that faucet.
What can I do to set up an environment where I thrive in my walk with the Lord?
First of all, I need to stop the striving, and just rest in Him.
I want to set up my days so that I am like those mint plants hanging out by the faucet, with the constant “rain” of His Spirit drenching me so that I have no choice but to grow, be fruitful, and stay vibrant, even in a drought.
I guess the first step would be to take a daily soak in His Word. Followed by a constant conversation with Him throughout the day…about everything. The good, the bad, and the ugly, so to speak. I even like to tell Him when I see something that makes me laugh (in a good way). I truly believe the Lord has the best sense of humor. You can see it all over His Word. (Hey, a run through of some of those stories might make a good post.)
A good daily soaking would also involve making choices that go along with a “living by the stream” kind of life. Choices that involve what I am watching on t.v., listening to on the radio, and even how I talk to my friends and family. Letting the kids know how the Lord is working in my life that day would help introduce them to “stream living”.
How about you?
Leave a comment, when you get a chance, and tell me how you will practice some “stream living” this week. I bet we could come up with some good ideas together!