Sunday, November 24, 2013

Grow Where Planted

I took this photo during a brief stop in Williamston, North Carolina.  It looks like a hillside covered with moss, but it's actually the rooftop of an old house -- covered in moss with trees and plants growing and old limbs and leaves littering its surface.  I always think its strange when I see plants growing on rooftops and walls.

When I saw this, I thought -- hey, we're all suppose to grow wherever we're planted, even if it might not be the most convenient place to put down roots.  There are people all over this world living in every kind of condition you can imagine.  Christians are being persecuted, dispossessed and far worse on a regular basis in many countries.  This is nothing new -- it's been happening since Christianity began and will, no doubt, continue until the Lord takes us all home.

Regardless of its place of residence, the green moss covering this roof is, I think, pretty.  It's soft, lush-looking and a nice shade of green.  Nonetheless, it's probably not the best place for a plant to grow and prosper, but those little plants are persistently hanging in there and holding their own.

There is actually a verse in 2 Kings 19:26 that speaks of plants growing on a roof:  "Their people, drained of power, are dismayed and put to shame.  They are like plants in the field, like tender green shoots, like grass sprouting on the roof, scorched before it grows up."  While this verse speaks of the grass scorching from the sun and withering away, the moss and plants on some roofs manage to keep on keeping on.  I wonder what the difference might be?

Statistics tell us that 75% of religious persecution these days is against followers of Jesus.  Christians are being persecuted, dispossessed and even killed in many countries in our world today.  This is a sad state of affairs, but it is not too different than many other times in history.  Satan is ever seeking to stir the pot against followers of our Lord.  Rome was responsible for the deaths of countless Christians during the years following the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ.  And so it will ever be -- until His return.

So, how to endure when you're clinging to life on top of a roof?  There's no simple and easy answer, but the truth of scripture can help.  Peter wrote to the Christians during one of those dangerous times in history, saying:  "Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.  His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness...but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  To Him be glory both now and forever!  Amen" 2 Peter 1:2-3.

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