Don’t Cut Down the Trees
God knew that Israel would be engaged in some fierce warfare during their conquest of the Promised Land. The territories would not fall without combat and resistance. Some battles would be long and hard and won only after significant sieges.
Adrenalin would be flowing, tempers might be high, and momentum difficult to contain. The impulse might be to destroy everything completely. But God says, in essence, don’t destroy the trees that you will later need to feed you.
It is one thing to fight life’s battles with total abandon and absolute commitment to victory. It is another to do so with reckless abandon and without regard to reason. It is in times of heightened intensity when we are completely engaged and unleashed in our personal fury that we most need to stop and think.
If there are rules of engagement and conduct in human warfare, how much more so do we need them as we traverse the mine fields, battles, and challenges of the spiritual life? We are pushed and pulled, tempted and tested along the way. We must muster all of the resources we can find and draw upon the powers of Heaven.
With such dynamism flowing through us, it is easy to lose perspective and go beyond the boundaries which are in our own best interest and those of the kingdom of God. It is called, “overkill.”
It happens when we burn bridges we will later need to cross, damage relationships we will later need to build upon, and chop down trees of life we will later need to sustain our lives.
Out of the very earthy, brutal, hard fought world of warfare comes a valuable life illustration. We should never be led entirely by our emotions.
To be led by the Spirit is a powerful thing. We must use that power with the grace and wisdom that the Spirit also provides.These words were written as church bulletin devotional for churches who offer Master Sunday Bulletins to their congregations. May it serve as a source of encouragement to you today. You are welcome to copy this devotion for one-time non-commercial, local church, or educational use. Please include the copyright line printed below with any reproduction. © Master Sunday Bulletins 2012. All rights reserved. Published by Master Sunday Bulletins · Merri V. Dennis, Publisher · Thomas B. Sims, Author