Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Trees & Nature


I just love palm trees -- like this lovely line of Royal Palms in Palm Beach, Florida.  Perhaps I'm so impressed by palms because they are few and far between where I live in Virginia.  Florida, however, is filled with the elegant and stately tree and I am suitably impressed with each and every one of them.

I have heard from people who own palm trees that they are a mess to take care of -- really difficult.  That's the sort of thing about nature that reminds me that this was not the way it was suppose to be.  When God created the world, He pronounced it, "Good!"  The first chapter of the creation chapter in Genesis says, "Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good...." 

But then, not too long after their beautiful creation where every bug, animal, blossom and leaf held to a lovely order that was only good, never harmful, sin entered the world and nature, along with man was cursed.  God said, "Cursed is the ground for your sake...thorns and thistles it shall bring forth..." Genesis 3:17-18.  It's no surprise then that as it says in Romans 8, "For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now."

It seems kind of unfair to nature, but sinful consequences almost always spill over into further places than just our own.  As Tim Keller writes, "Human beings are so integral to the fabric of things that when human beings turned from God the entire warp and woof of the world unraveled."

Matt Chandler, in his book, "The Explicit Gospel," points out how cosmic the whole gospel is to everything -- not just individual salvation.  He writes, "We see that the peace that is made by the blood of the cross covers 'all things.' ...the cross spans the brokenness between man and God and the brokenness between earth and heaven."

Palm trees, along with every facet of nature, were created to glorify and praise the Almighty Creator God.  I think they do a pretty good job of that in spite of the curse that covers them as well as us.  But, someday, all will be healed and reconciled and nature along with mankind can stop groaning and start rejoicing.  Until that day, I'm going to smile every time I see a palm tree and think, "In spite of her limitations, she's standing tall and praising God.  We could all learn a lesson from such faithfulness."

1 comment:

  1. Yes, yes, yes! Even "cursed" nature proclaims the glory of God. How cool is that?


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