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Monday, May 3, 2021

Redbuds and Dogwoods

By Joe Chesser

    Every year at this time our part of the world (southeast Missouri) is blessed with the blossoms of redbuds and dogwoods.  In the spring the redbuds sprout their purplish brilliance, followed in a couple of weeks by the equally brilliant white and pink blossoms of the dogwoods. In many areas these trees are planted in such a way as to accent each other.  Our older redbud is blooming brilliantly this year, and a younger one is just beginning to bloom a bit. It has taken a few years, but our dogwood will also bloom soon.
    Each year the spring plants and trees offer us a vivid reminder of God.  It’s not evolution that maintains the laws of nature – it’s God!  If evolution was true (and of course it’s not) things would be constantly inconsistent.  You would never know from one year to the next how evolution would have worked it “magic” and altered the redbuds to start producing yellow blossoms or begin blooming in September instead of late March.  But we know that won’t happen because God is in control of nature and will maintain his laws of nature as long as the world exists.  One of the great things the book of Hebrews says about Jesus is that He not only created the entire universe, but He also sustains “all things by his powerful word” (Hebrews 1:2-3).  That’s why every spring the redbuds and dogwoods put out their beautiful colors.  Because of God, you can count on it year after year!
    Jesus consistently demonstrates His power over the physical realm, and because of this we have reason to believe that He also can and will exercise His power over the spiritual realm.  Redbuds and dogwoods give us evidence for believing that Jesus has all power and all authority in heaven and on earth (Matthew 28:18).  When Jesus healed the paralytic (Mark 2:1-12) He made the point: “‘But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins…,’ He said to the paralytic, ‘I tell you, get up, take up your mat and go home.’”  Jesus used the visible, healing a crippled man, to expand their vision to also see that He could heal the spiritually crippled.
    If we choose to, redbuds and dogwoods will do the same for us.  They give evidence of His creative power.  They give evidence of His power to maintain His laws.  They give evidence that if He can do that each year, He also can do so much more.  Jesus can give us renewal, new birth (John 3:3-5).  Jesus can maintain our spiritual relationship with him year after year through His power working within us (Ephesians 3:14-21).
    We have no excuses for refusing to believe in Jesus’ power.  King David said, “The heavens declare the glory of God” (Psalm 19:1).  Paul added that “God’s invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature – have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse” (Romans 1:20).
    Remember this when you see redbuds and dogwoods every year.
- Joe Chesser preaches for the Fruitland Church of Christ, Fruitland, MO.  He may be contacted at joeandareva@yahoo.com

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