I am Righteous

Like a Tree… (4)

4oakTREEImage by k_r_craft on Pixabay

They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor. Isaiah 61:3

Who are they? “They” are those who have been saved and belong to God. “They” are those redeemed from poverty, brokenness, and despair. “They” are us.

We are called oaks of righteousness—two words we may not be comfortable owning, but who’s to argue with Isaiah? This is what I know about oaks:

  • Oaks are hardy, adaptable to a wide range of soil conditions and not prone to disease.
  • They thrive worldwide, reach fifty to seventy feet, and can live longer than 200 years.
  • Their wood is not only beautifully grained but is hard—used for ships of old and preferred for flooring and furniture.
  • Oak trees are considered one of the best shade trees and have long been a symbol of strength, wisdom, and stability.

Durable. Adaptable. Healthy. Strong. Stately. Beautiful. Feeling even less like an oak? We’ve not yet touched on the righteousness aspect.

Righteous—yes, you are, as am I. Even though I was angry yesterday, struggle with self-pity today, was jealous of my friend and doubted God, I am righteous because I am a “planting of the Lord.”

  • Because of His rescue and forgiveness,
  • Because my extensive taproot system seeks the water He supplies,
  • Because I am His planting,
  • Because God has made me so, I am righteous, and so are you.

My leaves will shade those who need respite from the heat, my acorns will fall and reproduce, I will stand as a symbol of strength and dignity—all for the display of His splendor.

I am righteous.

Image by k_r_craft on Pixabay

I am Planted

Like a Tree…

1Tree RootsWe have a lot of trees in our backyard. The fall consumes my husband’s time with raking and blowing, but right now the trees are peacefully barren.

I see no hints of green that promise the arrival of future leaves but I know they’re coming for one simple reason—the trees are planted. Their roots are spread through the earth drinking nourishing water and offering sturdy stability.

However, an upright tree doesn’t necessarily signify a planted tree. A severe storm toppled a large tree in our yard that appeared healthy. We were puzzled when it crashed to the ground—until we saw its roots. Shallow roots revealed that it was not firmly planted, despite its outward appearance. You know where I’m going with this, but it’s worth the repetition.

The person who delights in God’s Word is “like a tree planted by streams of water.” (Psalm 1:3)

The person in that verse is you and me—righteous people who have become so thanks to God’s forgiveness. Not content to make a good show by standing straight and looking respectable, we reach and stretch our roots to become strong, healthy, productive trees. We are balanced and nourished by roots that continually want more—more life, more knowledge, more fruit.

This is how I know a storm won’t down me like the tree in our backyard:

  • I am positioned near the water; I don’t hang out in dry places.
  • I am proactive in my thirst for God and the refreshment of His Word.

I am firmly planted.

Graphic from lmchouston.com