This picture was taken from the porch of my daughter's house last year. It was the season of a beautiful color tree and a reminder of how beauty can live in one place. This same tree went through the Napa fires this year and still stands. It does not hold these beautiful leaves, but it still lives. The house did not make it and the land is being cleared to rebuild. My daughter and her family are okay and live moves forward.
The beauty of one life is not always seen in a picture. It's so important to be rooted in the word of God and to live it. There are ups, downs and stories to be told. One life is like one tree, rooted and seasons change us. I want to share today about a season that changed me.
Ephesians 2:8-10 New International Version (NIV)
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
SEASON ~ that changed me
One story is the fires of Napa 2017
I remember getting the call from the daughter that they were outside my door. There was a fire in Napa and they needed to leave. We turned on the TV and saw the flames of so many places on fire. Heartbreaking and lives were changed forever. When you go through something big, you never forget it when it happens to you. Some people have moved on and might not even think about the fires anymore. Others, like my daughter and her family, did not have a house to go back to. A new normal and yet the tree I loved so much stands.
What has your life gone through and you can look back to see how it was just hard, but God was faithful? I can name a few right now. It was 1985 when I got a call that my husband feel over 40 feet at a construction site, but was okay. A life changing experience with a broken knee cap, cracked ribs, cuts all over his body and no work for over a year. Our kids were 5 and 2 years old. I can look back to see how God was faithful in this.
As I write, I share little stories of victories of life, but also sad ones. Just like the tree in the picture, my life has been full of beauty and rooted by faith. I live this scripture:
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.
ROOTED ~ just like the tree, someone planted that tree. It was watered by God with rain and there are seasons it's beauty shines with beautiful leaves. There are also seasons it's leaves fall off and change will come. Our lives are created by God and we are watered by experiences of life. Somethings will grow up and change us forever. Somethings will make us always see God's faithful through storms, sun and winds of change. One life makes such a difference when we see ourselves the way God does.
My beauty wasn't always in the mirror. I saw myself ugly because kids said I was in grade school. I saw my dumb because one teacher in 4th grade choose to speak words that made a class laugh. I saw my not qualified as an adult to do certain things because I didn't have a title. But you know what? My title reset in who I am in God. I am his child and created in his image. My attitude needs to reflect that and my words are powerful. Yes, even my words to myself. As I look into the mirror of my soul, I find myself faithful and determined to live in kindness. Just a little kid in 1960's and wanted kindness to rule my life. I haven't always done the right thing and I need the forgiveness of God. I got it and I changed my mindset.
Romans 12:1-2 New International Version (NIV)
A Living Sacrifice12 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
It is often said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Beauty is inside of you and let it shine out. God is faithful and determined to use your life. I see myself today that this beautiful tree in the pictures above. Rooted and grounded in God. Seasons changed me into a better person and not bitter anymore. I like who I am today and I hope you feel the same way about yourself.
My prayers continue for you, your family and friends. Purpose this a good day and know that God is able to handle your now of life. Just like Hebrews 11:1 NOW FAITH ~