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Down in the Missouri River bottoms sits a tree that is 300 years old. Just imagine what this tree has been through over the past years. It has to be so strong to withstand the winds, floods, and snowstorms for 300 years. It is rooted deep into the earth in this same spot for all of these years. As the years evolved, man built a dirt road beside it, but no one took it down. How incredible is that? I want to use the strength of this tree to encourage you to dig your roots deep to stand through the floodwaters of life.
What do you think this tree has endured over the past years? I do know it has seen some deep floods. Floodwaters that rose to the top and hung on for weeks. Yet through it all, it still stands.
This Old Tree
My son took this photo and let me use it for this poem. He often drives down that dirt road to look at the beauty of this ancient tree. He says it gives him strength and peace. When he has things on his mind, it gives him an excellent place to think and work through problems. He said he often stops to imagine what this tree has seen in its lifetime.
I drove by the old tree a few times years ago. When my son showed me this photo, it inspired me to use it as an analogy to how strong you and I can be.
These roots have to be as deep as the tree is tall, digging deep into the earth to siphon water and nutrients for life. And the wood must be rock solid hard, and tough to keep it standing tall and not lean. But the one incredible thing is this tree is still alive.
How much strength do you think it takes to stand in the middle of nowhere for 300 years? How much force do you think it takes for us to stand strong all of our life?
What does this tree speak to you? To me, it boasts of the strength it takes to make it through life. Life can be rough. I am sure you have had some times in life when you felt too weak to keep going. You couldn’t face another problem or heartache. I do know some have felt this more than others.
Dig Your Roots Deep
I have been where you are, and I have felt like this tree. The raging tornadoes and floods were overtaking my world. I ‘didn’t think my roots were deep enough to keep me standing, but I knew I had to stand tall and strong.
I dug my roots deep to keep standing. I have stood firm when times have been way too difficult. There were times I did not think I could face another day. And I had no idea where I would get my strength. But I stood and moved forward.
You, too, are strong and can stand tall. You may feel like you will crumble at any moment. Then you turn around and find strength in some small word or morsel of wisdom. You can not tumble. Too many people are counting on you.
But wait, just because I was strong even when I felt like falling apart does not mean you will stand. To move forward and do what you need, it takes a mindset and a belief. Who do you put your belief in?
Will God take you through the storm?
I am a firm believer in the word of God as spoken through Jesus and his disciples. But in these times when the tunnel looks so dark, I did not lean on God. I forgot that he was there for me, and my strength did not come from him. Or wait, maybe it did, and I was hurting so bad that I didn’t feel it.
You may know the poem “Footprints,” where God carries you when you can not see your footprints in the sand any longer. You may be in tremendous pain and need to be carried for a bit. God will never leave you. He will hold you in his arms until you are strong enough to stand on your own. God is my root, and he can be yours also if you choose.
I Am Here To Encourage You
The good times in your life were when your roots and your strength grew. The strength you gained during those times will carry you through the hard times.
But when you feel weak and tired, it is tough to remember that there were times that were not so hard. I encourage you and give you words of strength. The storm always comes before the calm.
You may feel all alone and believe that there is no answer. At times it appears that way, but the solution to the problems you are going through will come with the sun. That 300-year-old tree just stood there during the floods and tornados. It kept standing no matter what came its way.
You, too, will stand and dig your roots deep into the earth. Dig your heels into the earth and never fall because you have what it takes to stand. Remember that when the sky of your life is bleak, and you can’t see a way out, there will be a light at the end of the tunnel. It is the cycle of life.
Tough Times Leave Scars
What you are going through will leave scars. These markings in your life are useful as a reminder of how you stood steadfast when you ‘couldn’t see clear to take another step. God will not remove the scars, but he will heal them. They will no longer be open and painful. He will mend your broken heart.
When the wind and tornadoes come to tear you down, you will continue to stand. The rain will wash away the extra baggage you ‘don’t need. Your feet will stay planted where you need them to be. All of the years and heavy storms will leave scars to remember for the rest of your life. But the scars will remind you of just how strong you were and how strong you are.
You Will Not Fail
You may feel like giving up and falling and think you have failed. Do not let self-doubt cause you to lose faith. You may think you don’t have the strength of this tree. But I assure you when you look back at the hard times; you will see where the hand of God was on your shoulder holding you up.
So for now, when you feel weak, I want you to remember this tree, its strong roots, and how it reaches to the son for strength.
Stand Tall For 300 Years
It has taken 300 years for this tree to become what it is today. It will take you time to go through your dark times. I want you to know that no matter how much time it takes to get through this storm, you will make it.
When you make it across the floodwaters, do stand tall to reach the sunshine that will help you grow. At first, it will be small rays of light until one day you will see the sun shining bright in front of your eyes. Deep inside of your heart, you do have what it takes to face the world ahead.
I felt like this when the hard times came. I know you, too, can make it through because I am living proof of the strength that stands just like this tree. I have many scars and have been through many storms to wash away the old. The harshest storm I have ever faced has moved on. When I look back, I can see the hand of God and his angel’s presence in my life.