Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! (2 Corinthians 5:17)
On our recent walks, an abundance of fruit, nuts, seeds and cones has been evident from the trees. Not just on the trees but, courtesy of recent high winds, beneath the trees also. There they will lie until they probably rot, I mused. Or so I thought.
On Sunday, the radio 4 morning sermon caught my attention. The priest considered the wild-fires in California, which have destroyed acre upon acre of giant redwood. Giant redwood, the largest trees on the planet, the sky scrapers of the natural world, growing to a height of nearly 100 metres in groves on the Sierra Nevada. Each one might expect to live for up to three thousand years, but is now a charred silhouette.
Apparently, this is not the end of the story. For the cones from the redwood which typically lay green and closed on the ground, need to be dried by the warmth of the fires before the seeds burst out. Once released, they enjoy growth in the rich new nutrient bed of ash.
New life grows from tragedy.
It reminds me of the life that begins when we invite Jesus into our lives. The fire of the Holy Spirit sweeps through our hearts to destroy our cosy sinful behaviours, and a new conscience grows from the ashes.
A conscience that will grow in learning and faith, becoming ever taller as the child of God that it has now become. A conscience that will stand out amongst the wreckage for all to notice and admire.
So that’s what can happen to seeds that lie on the ground. Have you experienced new life?
When I’m stained with guilt and sin,
you are there to lift me, heal me and forgive me.
You give me strength to stand again,
stronger than I was before.
Thank you, Lord Jesus.