I’ll never forget the first time my dad told me the story of Uncle Jerry and the knotted trees. For those of you not familiar with the story, my dad’s uncle Jerry would take little saplings, tie their trunks into a knot & allow them to mature/grow into full adult trees, all whilst allowing that knot to grow with the tree.
First of all, who has the patience/foresight/idea to tie a little sapling of a tree into a knot, so that years later that little sapling would grow into a full grown, knotted tree?
It’s a story & an image that has forever been with me. Of course at the time, I had no idea of the spiritual significance and/or the lesson it would hold for me years later.
As I look at my life, I am constantly reminded that my human nature is to live in conflict. At all times I find a battle raging on the inside of me… Should I forgive OR should I stay bitter? Should I take that thought captive OR should I allow it to fester & produce in my life?
You would think that those are easy choices… Of course you should forgive.. Of course you should get your mind right… Easy enough, right?? Sometimes it is, but sometimes it’s not.
I think most of the time, the easy choice is to just let our issues sit & not deal with them. I have found that it’s always easier to plow around the stumps/issues in our lives; but what I am beginning to learn in life is that boys plow around stumps… Men DIG them out.
Maybe as you examine your life & some of the issues you find yourself struggling with, you are reminded of Uncle Jerry’s trees… Maybe you feel like your life is all tied up in knots? And make no mistake, knots come in all different shapes, sizes, & are called by all different names… Some knots go by the name of “Bitterness,” others go by names like “Addiction” & “Anger.”
Whatever “knots” you find ingrained in your life, as irreversible as they may seem, let me leave you with some hope… Through another tree (see 1Peter 2:24) Jesus Christ & his grace, even the most stubborn of knots can be untied. The grace of God can take our knotted, issue filled lives and lead us gently through the “untying” process.
What are the knots in your life?? What are the issues that instead of being dealt with, we have either hidden or run away from?? Time to deal with it!