A Sheltering Tree

September 4, 1999
by Mary Jane Hanson

Psalm 7:1 – O Lord my God, I take refuge in you. (NIV)

On the flat prairies of Saskatchewan, it is common to see shelterbelts of trees around farmyards. Trees add beauty but are also functional. They provide protection from the wind. Trees often serve as shelter for our friends the birds.

Tonight I was out walking. It was windy and rainy. I saw a large birch tree and decided to get out of the elements. I felt secure under this umbrella of green leaves.

On my walk home, I remembered a plaque that I have that reads: "Friendship is a sheltering tree." I believe that our friends, including parents and spouses, can provide shelter when we need it. This is often our source of comfort in times of upheaval in our lives.

It is good for us to remember that Jesus is our closest friend. He is with us when our troubles seem more numerous than autumn leaves that need to be raked in fall.

Steve Green writes the following words in his song I Will Call On You:

    I'll call on you
    Call when I'm in trouble
    I will call whenever I despair
    I'll call on you
    Watching and waiting.
    You alone will answer every prayer.
    There is no one else I can turn to
    I will call on you.

There are times when we are unable to reach out to our friends. It is very important for us to remember that we can always come to Jesus. His arms are wide open. He experienced the ultimate amount of pain and suffering on the cross. We know that it is easier to have empathy for others who are suffering when we ourselves are wounded healers. This is precisely the reason that Jesus knows how to comfort and shelter us when we are most vulnerable.

Prayer: Loving God, we thank you for the peace and security that come from knowing Jesus. We praise you for giving us your Son, who is like a sheltering tree. Amen.

About the author:

Mary Jane Hanson <mjh013@sasktel.net>
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada

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