Illustrate God’s Plan and Purposes

By Pastor Jess Foglesong


God reveals His character and ways in a variety of forms. One very obvious form are through -- Trees. And of course there are a million varieties and shapes. My favorite tree is the Monterey Cypress: the way it grows … shaped by the wind into a un-even balanced work of naturally created art. Another are the man-shaped Bonsai trees: formed by the creativity of an artist -- snipping away at branches to form that low lying, sleek, wind swept-like thing of beauty.

My wife’s favorite is the “lone” Oak sitting high on top of a knoll. The Oak tree is a solid, hard wood, deep rooted tree that grows outwardly, with many, many crooked branches forming a geometrically round shape, surrounding it’s thick trunk. They are magnificent, no doubt.

Quite opposite are the majestic Redwood trees. They are tall, straight with branches that are evenly spaced and perfectly staggered from bottom to top. They are an example of a perfect tree. They are ever-green, never losing there leaves and color annually. They are some of the oldest trees on earth -- living hundreds of years. And to top it off: they even have the ability to “clone” themselves, by providing seedlings near their trunk-base assuring an exact copy of itself. Therefore, like father tree … like son tree. Like God (the Father)…Like Christ (His Son)... "you see the Son, you see the Father"

What is God illustrating to us? I suggest to you that God creates and forms every object -- whether animate or inanimate -- in our universe as an illustration or sign of His Character, His plan, as well as His purposes.

When I look at the Oak tree: its disorganized, wildly crooked shape … I think of a fallen universe; an imperfect, but still growing and living entity. There is Life, but it has been hampered, tainted, impeded. Have you ever gazed at an oak tree in the winter months without its leaves … it looks like an ugly, even ghostly, spooky, crooked tree. And one wonders why did God create such a tree?

When I look at a tall, magnificent Redwood: I think of beauty, of majesty, of power, of perfection, of symmetry, of serenity, of pristine glory … and so much more. I think of everlasting life! The Oak tree has roots that go deep into the earth; therefore it is tied to this realm, this earth. But the Redwood has shallow roots; and therefore it is NOT anchored, or tied to the earth. Symbolically, the entire creation of the Redwood tree seems to be that it is pointing it’s way “Home” -- like a rocket ship ready to blast off! Illustrating that God’s people -- humanity -- is also on its way home…. Home to the Father; to an Everlasting, peaceful Life.

So, the next time you are out for a drive -- look around and see if you can decipher God’s lessons -- His illustrations and Signs. Look at the Oak tree, then look at the magnificent Redwood tree. You will be astounded. And if you are a believer (or still undecided) -- you will be uplifted, in the realization that you are Special; that He is in touch with you (with us).

WE are Touched By God!