Lessons from the Redwood Forest
"And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching."1
Giant Sequoia trees, also known as redwoods, are the biggest living things on Earth. Heights of 300 feet and diameters of 30 feet are not uncommon. They can range in age from 2,000 to 3,000 years—some of which were living when Jesus walked the shores of Galilee. The largest specimen, the General Sherman Tree in Sequoia National Park, is 275 feet tall (84 m), has a diameter of 36.4 feet (11.1 m) at the base, and has been estimated to weigh 2500 metric tons. The Pacific coast redwoods in southern Oregon and northern California range in height from 100 to 367 feet (30 to 112 m)—a size approached only by the eucalyptus of Australia.
What is fascinating about these majestic redwood trees that reach their leafy arms heavenward is that they stand for hundreds of years surviving raging fires, violent storms, and fierce winds. I have also read that they have a comparatively shallow root system which makes their survival even more amazing. So how do they survive? They survive because they live in groves with their root systems entangled with numerous other trees. In other words they support each other. They couldn't survive alone.
Neither can we. We need each other. We were never meant to go it alone. We need the support of one another to make it. One of the major purposes of the Christian church is for the very purpose of encouraging and supporting one another. If you don't belong to such a church, I urge you to do all you can to find one.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank you that you have designed the church, not only to help us grow spiritually, but also to support us emotionally and socially. Help me to find and be a part of such a church—one that is true to your Word and fulfills your divine purpose in the life of its members. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."
P.S. See the article: "What a Good Church Can Do for You" at: http://www.actsweb.org/living/church1.htm.
1. Hebrews 10:24-25 (NIV).