It was winter. I was walking from my car to the office, and wasn’t paying enough attention to where my feet were landing. I heard a small crunch, and realized I had stepped on a little tree sapling, snapping it right in half.
The environmentalist in me was disappointed. I really do try to be more of a tree hugger, and less of a tree killer. But, off to work, and the demands of the day left the little sapling quickly forgotten.
Fast forward to the following spring. I step out of my car in the same parking lot, and as I make the same journey to my office, I look down and see the same sapling that I had snapped months earlier. I was thrilled to see that it hadn’t died, despite my steel-toed best efforts… in fact, I could see a small bump in the trunk where it had healed, and continued to grow.
I’ve come to realize that there are two kinds of strength: resistance, and regeneration. Resistance is when something resists being broken. This kind of strength is seen mostly in lifeless things; airplane wings can be made of hardened steel, because it has incredible resistance. But this little sapling showed a different kind of strength. It could regenerate; it could heal and continue growing in the very place that it had been broken. And this makes it the superior form of strength, because once resistance fails, it cannot heal. But if something has the ability to heal and regenerate, there’s very little you can do to stop it.
God is in the business of regeneration. In the Bible, He calls it ‘resurrection’, and it applies to every part of your life. In fact, resurrection means He can not only bring it back from being broken, He can bring it from dead to alive! He can resurrect your health, your mind, your faith… and even your soul. It doesn’t matter how many times your heart has been broken, or how tiny the pieces are… God is in the resurrection business, and just like the little sapling that didn’t know how to give up, new hope rises up from the broken bits.
“and they can no longer die; for they are like the angels. They are God's children, since they are children of the resurrection.” – Luke 20:36
“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 10 We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.” – 2 Cor 4:8-10