A few weeks ago, I shared this quote by Anne Graham Lotz:
“Faith is like a tender plant, rooted in Christ alone, watered by the Spirit and the Word, strengthened by the winds of adversity and the sunshine of blessing.”
After reading that, I got to wondering if trees were in fact strengthened by wind. Could it be that they’re building muscle in the same way that we do? Was resistance training the key?
And then I happened upon an article about “The Biosphere 2,” an experimental ecological facility built in the late 80s by the University of Arizona. This enormous ecological system (spanning 40 acres) was complete with its own rain forest, wetlands, fog desert, farmland, and ocean. What caught my attention the most in all of this wasn’t the fact that it had its own ocean. I mean that was pretty amazing, but even more amazing than that was the fact that the trees were weakened by a lack of stress wood which is normally created in resistance to wind. (Source: Wikipedia – Biosphere 2)
Who would have thought?! You eliminate the wind, and you eliminate the tree’s natural ability to be strengthened by it.
In the same way, we’re strengthened every time we exercise faith against the winds of adversity. Every time we choose love over hate, peace over stress, kindness over anger, and joy over disappointment we’re exercising a life that produces good fruit. We’re building the resistance muscle that we need to stand strong in our faith.
Good timber does not grow with ease: The stronger wind, the stronger trees; The further sky, the greater length; The more the storm, the more the strength. By sun and cold, by rain and snow, In trees and men good timbers grow. – Douglas Malloch 1922
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Tilling the Soil
The entire life of Joseph is a testimony of faith that is strengthened time and again. But today let’s take a look at Genesis Chapter 39 in particular. Here we see that Joseph remained strong through adversity and was blessed for his faithfulness.
Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. (Romans 12:12, NIV)
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Darlene Schacht and her husband Michael live in Manitoba Canada where the summers are beautiful and the winters are cold. Together they’ve come to learn that relationships aren’t always easy, but that marriage, the way God intended it to be, is a treasure worth fighting for.
She began her publishing journey about twelve years ago when she pioneered one of the first online magazines for Christian women, known at the time as “Christian Women Online Magazine.” After three years, Darlene left CWO to blog as a solo author at Time-Warp Wife Ministries.
It was also during this transition that she worked alongside actress Candace Cameron Bure to write the NYT Best-Selling book, Reshaping it All: Motivation for Spiritual and Physical Fitness. Reshaping it All was the winner of both the 2011 USA Best Book Awards and the 2012 Christian Reading Retailers Choice Awards.
Author of more than 15 books, Darlene continues to write and to minister to her readers through her blog at TimeWarpWife.com.
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You are loved by an almighty God,
The Time-Warp Wife