Monday, August 31, 2009

Digging Up Roots

One of the things I enjoy in life is working in my flower garden. I guess you could say I got that from my mom. Every day, usually early in the morning or late in the evening mom would work in her flowers. She’d walk around the house looking at every flower, inspecting every leaf and bloom looking for any early signs of trouble.

One thing she couldn’t stand though was a weed. If she saw any in her garden, she wouldn’t wait for it to take good root. She’d take her little spade and attack with a vengeance, like a soldier on a mission rooting out the enemy. Dad on the other hand was just the opposite. He liked the beauty, but didn’t like the duty.

I remember one year when we moved to a new house. The house was a large three bed room home, and had plenty of room to play outside; just what we wanted. There was one problem though; the plants and shrubs around the house were overgrown badly. I knew what our task would be based on the conversation my mom and dad was having; we were going to be on weed detail.

The next morning after eating a good breakfast, we marched out the door to start the arduous task of removing weeds. Mom dispatched each of us kids to different locations to get the job done quicker. Dad on the other hand, stood on the side line and watched while mom and we kids did all the work. He was moms back up for us kids, when she needed us to tighten up and get on the ball.

I was pulling away at the weeds thinking I was doing a good job, when mom came over to inspect. She stopped me and informed me that I needed to pull them up by the roots, otherwise they would come back and make the garden look ugly and she didn’t want that. Well like most kids I responded by saying, “Yes mama,” and continued pulling weeds. What mom didn’t know though was; when I got to one that wouldn’t come out of the ground by the root, I’d just break it off at the ground and cover it up. We finished the yard work by the end of the day and what a transformation.

A couple of weeks later when coming home from school, something didn’t look quite right around the outside of the house. As I entered the house, mom stopped me and asks me to come outside with her. As we walked around the house, she pointed out the weeds that had grown in the flowers. I had been nabbed, the roots that I had left had come back to haunt me. Well, after a long lecture, and a few grueling hours of weed pulling supervised by my mom, I had learned my lesson.

Looking back at those days and even now working in my own flower garden; I can see how roots from weeds left unattended can spring forth and steal the beauty of the flowers. In the word of God we read, “…lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;” (Hebrews 12:15b). Therefore as a child of God, we shouldn’t allow the root of bitterness to stay buried in our hearts; it will one day spring forth obscuring the beauty that God has intended for us to be. So take the time and ask God to help you “Dig up the Roots” in your life today.

Louis Edwards

Monday, August 24, 2009

Dark Clouds on the Horizon

Mark 4:39
And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.

As a child living in the North Central part of Texas, in an area known a Tornado Alley; I’ll never forget the first severe thunderstorm of my life. My brother and I were playing outside; it was typical hot 107 degree day. The noon sky was beautiful and blue, and not a cloud as far as you could see.

As the day lingered on and unknown to us; off in the distance on the horizon a monstrous storm was forming. We continued to play, fight, and argue like most siblings do over nothing. Suddenly without warning I noticed the wind began to pick up, the sky turned dark and began rolling like a bubbling caldron. The rain started falling in large drops with such ferocity, that when it hit your bare skin it stung like little needles. That was one time Mom didn’t have to tell us to get out of the rain.

While my brother and I stood on the porch watching the rain; I noticed these round white objects falling out of the sky the size of a quarter. I later found out that it was hail. Off in the distance we could hear the sound of the siren from the fire house. I had no idea at the time it meant a tornado was in the area. Mom came to the door and told both of us to get into the house and go down the hall. I knew something was wrong by the urgency in her voice.

Later that evening after watching the news with my parents, I realized what had happened. Not far from where we lived, a tornado had touched down and destroyed several homes in the area. Fortunately no one was killed or injured.

Jesus instructed His disciples to get into the boat so they could go to the other side. As they started across the Sea of Galilee, all was well, no one even thought of any impending danger, especially with Jesus on board.

Suddenly out of no where a storm began to threaten their lives. The winds began blowing violently, causing the sea to churn sending waves across the bow of the boat threatening to send them to the bottom. Seeing their lives in danger they cried out, “Master carest thou not that we parish?” (Mark 4:38) Jesus stood and said, “Peace be still…” and suddenly there was a calm came over the sea, and in the lives of His disciples.

Many times we face natural storms like hurricanes or tornados. Some we can prepare for in advance with plenty of warning; others happen suddenly without warning. As a child of God we also face spiritual storms. Some we see on the horizon, others form suddenly. When these spiritual storms come our way, and it seems that all may be lost just remember; Jesus is with us in the storm, and he is the peace speaker.

By Louis Edwards

Friday, August 14, 2009

The Dark

As a child I remember being scared of the dark. My family and I would go the theater, watch a scary movie, then return home in the dark and my Dad didn't help matters.

Afraid that something might get us in the dark . My brother and I would argue over who would turn on the light, and later turn it off again once we were in bed.

One night while getting ready for bed, my Dad had slipped out of the house...or so I thought. Little did I know; he had slid under my bed patiently waiting for his intended victim?

I arrived at my bed, and turned down the covers preparing for the mad dash I would make from the light switch to the bed; then suddenly a hand came from under my bed and grabbed me by the ankle. Well, you know what happened next. I screamed, jumped, and I thought I was a goner.

The light in our bed room brought great comfort in a room full of darkness; not knowing what may be lurking around the corner, or under the bed. Many times as a child of God, we face different challenges of darkness. It may be the uncertainty of family illness, finances, or future events; the list can go on and on.

The light available to us as a child of God, bringing us comfort in a world of darkness is the Word of God. His word says, "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path." (Ps. 119:105)

His word is, "A lamp unto my feet..." The light of His word shines directly at our feet allowing us to see any eminent danger. It is, "A light unto my path." This sheds light into a dark and dreary world, allowing us a look into the future and preparing us for what may be ahead.

Jesus is our light, our hope, and our comforter. So don't be afraid of this dark world; remember to turn on the light switch of the word of God.

By Louis Edwards