Day 98 June 25, 2020
When we first came to Jamestown in 1995, one of the noticeable attractions was on Buffalo Street right next to the church. Perhaps many of you have taken notice of this attraction. There is even a plaque describing it right there. It is what has become known as The Jamestown Oak. It has been determined that this beautiful expansive oak is well over 200 years old. I am still in awe of this magnificent oak tree. I considered it a privilege to have Christ First church sharing space with this beauty.
One could study this tree for hours noticing its many branches that span high and wide. In the summer, cool breezes rustle the green leaves. The sun peeks through the gaps in the tree creating dancing glimmers of light. Its canopy provides some wonderful shade. Its low branches are tempting to children of all ages who want to hold on and swing. (Our custodian was not that fond of the low branches when attempting to mow the lawn.)
Do you know what is most magnificent about this tree? Not what is seen but the root system below the ground. The Jamestown Oak has a main root that grows vertically, providing a reliable supply of nourishment. From the main root, there is a mass of roots that spread horizontally providing a lifetime of nutrients and moisture. This intricate root system can grow more massive that the tree it supports. The roots are an anchor providing stability for the above ground tree.
Going back to the Parable of the Sower again, think about our own lives. Like the mighty oak, so much of who we are and so much of our growth comes from what is inside or beneath the surface so to speak. Jesus emphasized the importance of being firmly planted in a personal relationship with the Father, in that good soil. As the knowledge of God as revealed through the Scriptures takes root and grows in us, our faith roots sustained by God’s Spirit are nurtured and watered. No matter whatever-changing circumstances, trials, persecution, and worry we face God helps we followers grow like the Jamestown Oak.
Explanation of the parable of the farmer
18 “Consider then the parable of the farmer. 19 Whenever people hear the word about the kingdom and don’t understand it, the evil one comes and carries off what was planted in their hearts. This is the seed that was sown on the path. 20 As for the seed that was spread on rocky ground, this refers to people who hear the word and immediately receive it joyfully. 21 Because they have no roots, they last for only a little while. When they experience distress or abuse because of the word, they immediately fall away. 22 As for the seed that was spread among thorny plants, this refers to those who hear the word, but the worries of this life and the false appeal of wealth choke the word, and it bears no fruit. 23 As for what was planted on good soil, this refers to those who hear and understand, and bear fruit and produce—in one case a yield of one hundred to one, in another case a yield of sixty to one, and in another case a yield of thirty to one.”
Our loving God nourish our hearts with your Word. May your Spirit nurture and feed our faith helping us become deep rooted so that the canopy of our love is shared with others. Allow your Son to shine through us. We desire to be productive fruit for your Kingdom. Lord, hear our prayers. Amen
Today: Look for those beautiful trees whose roots go deep to provide moisture and nutrients.