BACKWARD OR FORWARD?
Read Ephesians 3: 14-21
Jesus said, “Unless a kernel of wheat falls to the
ground and dies, it remains only a single seed.
But if it dies, it produces many seeds.”
Driving through a lush, green forest, I rounded a curve to
see hundreds of white cylinders studding a bare hillside. The
scene resembled a ceme-
tery marked with rows of
tombstones. Then I looked
closer. Each white cylinder
surrounded a tiny hand-
planted sapling, protecting
it from nibbling deer and harsh winds. In a few decades a
forest would again cover this hill. I meditated on the larger
truth of this picture: with loss comes space for new growth.
Then I thought, How often have I experienced the loss of
possessions, people, or jobs from my life? Each time, my imme-
diate response had been anger and frustration. I had wasted
energy looking backward when I could have been looking
forward to the new life God could plant in that now-empty
Rather than fighting change, we can instead consider how
much sooner something new and beautiful could grow if we
would only hand over our pride and control to God who longs
to bless us. Contrary to the “me first” attitude that the world
encourages, God tells us that if we die to our selfish desires
(see Gal. 5: 24), we will see doors opening to new growth —
“far more than all we can ask or imagine.”
Prayer: Dear Lord, help us to trust you with our losses.
Then help us to look forward to the new growth only you can
Linda Jett (Oregon)
Prayer Focus: TO BE OPEN TO NEW LIFE
— John 12: 24 (NIV)
Thought for the Day
With each loss, God
provides an opportunity
for new growth.