“But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” Jeremiah 17:7-8 NIV
We were halfway through our longest family vacation road trip. Our 5 children ranged from ages 5 to 10 years old. We took our conversion van from Birmingham through Colorado to California and back. While we were driving through the Mojave desert our air conditioning stopped working. Even at highway speed with all of the windows opened, the heat was oppressive. The last 3 days, Pam and I somehow managed to drive through the night while we visited the sites during the day. The heat changed our plans.
Jeremiah is expounding on verses found in Psalm 1 about the blessing of a person whose foundation and trust are in God. He adds the phrases about not fearing the heat and drought. Biologically, even a plant with proper water can still be adversely affected by extreme heat.
The first reaction from the plant to the heat will be noticed in the leaves. If the leaves wilt and die, the plant will move in that same direction. Some trees will drop leaves on purpose to conserve water for the rest of the tree. It’s one of the ways that God created the tree to navigate through the heat.
Green leaves are crucial for the life of the tree or plant. Leaves draw energy from the sunlight and convert it into life for the tree. Jeremiah states that a person whose foundation is in God will perpetually have green leaves in their lives. They will draw life from the “Son” to help them navigate the heat. You can endure very adverse “stuff” in your life, if you are remaining connected to the water of life and receiving His Sonlight.
One other aspect about heat toward the plant. The tree has no control over when the heat will come, how hot the heat will be, or the duration of the length of time the heat remains. We really don’t like being “not in control.” We spend much time complaining about the heat and asking God to change our circumstances. Our main priority should not rest on the heat, but nurturing our connection to God. Jeremiah says that the tree can continue to prosper even when these conditions exist. Prosperity is not the absence of heat, but comes from a foundation and trust in God for support and life.
Because of your relationship with God , don’t fear the heat. Your job is to continue to draw from the well springs of the river of life (the Holy Spirit) and keep your leaves turned toward the Sonlight for energy to endure.
You will make it through this. Somebody today needs to receive that message…You will make it through this! God can sustain you during the “heat of this moment”. You may have to drive through the night, but God will make a way through your desert.
Blessings and Fear Not