I love Christmas. It’s a season of hope. Hope in God, hope in His promises, hope and anticipation of His coming to meet with us just when we need Him, to speak to us and breath on us. He is the Bright and Morning Star, the Coming King, the One they waited centuries for.
In yesterday’s post I talked about Romans 15:12-13. Romans 15:12 refers directly to the prophesy in Isaiah 11: 1, “Out of the stump of David’s family will grow a shoot—yes, a new Branch bearing fruit from the old root.”
And so we wait. We hope.
But what happens when we don’t feel filled with hope? What if we struggle to believe God could make something good out of those areas of our lives that feel dead or broken? Pieces of our lives feel more like a stump that was cut down in disappointment and loss than one waiting with hope and anticipation. We face hard things in life: unfulfilled dreams, broken hearts, financial breakdown, sickness and pain. Maybe we hoped and waited, but faced trials along the way that burned pain down deep. Maybe we believe God is faithful and always good, but we’ve felt like that great hope and expectation for His coming in our lives has been shattered by disappointment. The future that once seemed like a growing tree full of life and blessing isn’t so secure….it feels like a dream cut to the ground. We’ve waiting and hoped and haven’t seen the fulfillment. Yet.
“Out of the stump of David’s family will grow a shoot—yes, a new Branch bearing fruit from the old root.”
You see, that stump of David’s family (otherwise known as the stem of Jesse, King David’s father) laid dormant for 600 years before the coming of Jesus. Jesus is the shoot, the new Branch that grew from that dormant stump. I wonder how many times we’ve looked at that area in our own lives that feels lifeless and dormant and just a seen a dead stump.
All is not lost.
Out of that stump grows a shoot, a branch of new life.
I’m no green thumb. Gardening is NOT my thing, but I do know that when a new branch sprouts from an otherwise dead looking plant, it’s not just BARELY alive or KINDA alive. It’s fully alive. The new life shoot or bud blooming off the stump tells us life has been in the roots all along.
Whatever that area of your life that has felt like a lifeless stump, a cut down dream, an unfulfilled promise, all is not lost. What appears dead has deep roots that God is growing beneath the surface, working where we can’t see, and producing life that will spring forth in His time. His timing is always perfect.
And one day all those silent years later, a star appeared in the City of David, in Bethlehem, and brought forth Jesus, the shoot, the Branch, the new life and fulfillment of the promise of God.
“There’s the root of our ancestor Jesse, breaking through the earth and growing tree tall, tall enough for everyone everywhere to see and take hope!” Rom 15:12
We have hope. What seems dead and beyond repair has life at the roots. We might not see it on the surface, but He does. New life is coming.
He’s working where we can’t always see…deep down. And life is brimming.
Hope again. All is not lost.
Take heart. He is coming.