Spring Forth New Life in Me Again
“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” Isaiah 43:19
What plans could God have for such a seemingly worthless stump? Just look at it. How could that ever spring forth life again? Would you believe that it did?
This stump is tucked away in the corner of my back patio. It is all that remains now of a once thriving Magnolia tree. It was perfectly healthy, and the beautiful southern icon boasted its velvety white blooms season after season. Unfortunately it was growing in the wrong place.
Hmmm…I think I’ve been there. May I turn a lifeless exhale into a new breath of trust in you.
The tree was planted years ago, decades perhaps before I would ever know this would one day be my home. It is funny to think, but I was probably a child at the time. But it was planted too close to the house, and a few months ago we realized that it was now endangering our home’s foundation and must be removed.
It was heart wrenching to watch the men with chainsaws cut and haul it away. The last step in the tree removal was a deep “X” cut in the stump for salt to be poured in thereby snuffing out any final life. Gone…or so I thought. Hope is not exactly what comes to mind when looking at a barren stump. But its creator wasn’t finished. Seemingly dried up seasons in my life have looked similar to this stump. In these seasons, I have often wondered how God could ever bring forth fresh life.
Tucked deep within the stump, God was still at work. A few weeks later I noticed a fresh clump of green magnolia leaves emerging from the landscape tarp. “How in the world?” I wondered. With great excitement, I carefully removed & replanted the shoots from the stump. I was reminded of Isaiah 43:19…
“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”
What hope that verse gives us when we think all hope is gone. While we wander in our wasteland, God is already at work, ready to spring up something new. May I turn a lifeless exhale into a new breath of trust in you! All those weeks of a seemingly dead stump, and God was growing a life that was ready to begin anew. In His timing, God lovingly grew fresh new shoots and provided the essential sunlight and nourishing rains. In His timing, God provided a way in the wilderness, and provides one for us too. The tender new shoots were lifted out of the wasteland and placed in a land of plenty. Tucked tightly in new rich new soil, this beautiful tree basks in God’s richness of hope and blessing for the years to come of its life of “something new.”
Lord, spring forth new life in me. Remind me of your presence today. It is so hard to see your hands at work in seasons that feel so dry. There are days that I wander in the wilderness & wasteland and cannot see a way out. When I am hurting or feel confused, remind me of your words penned in Isaiah 43:19. Change me from the inside out. May I turn a lifeless exhale into a new breath of trust in you. May I place my hurting and confusion at your feet today and trust that you are at work, even when I can’t see or feel your presence. May I be patient to wait for your timing. I trust that you are at work doing a new thing in my life even as I pray these words. Spring forth in me a new tender shoot of life that is full of hope and peace and joy. ~Amen