Lectionary Scriptures and Comments

Planting Trees 071511

Planting trees at Shaar ha-Mizrach

Image via Wikipedia

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Psalm 139:1-12, 23-24

Isaiah 44:9-17

Hebrews 6:13-20

Planting Trees 071511

It is hot. Part of the heat is seasonal, and we expect it every year. But it is hotter than that, and all God’s creatures suffer in it.

We might ask why God is doing this, but that is maybe like a drunk driver asking God why God caused a car wreck. Sometimes we give to God responsibility for catastrophes that are not within God’s will.

There are too many people, too many cars and too many guns. There is not enough love, not enough food and clean water. What can we do?

Every Christian is expected to pray every day and to read the Bible every day. Maybe we should also recognize the necessity of planting trees. The shade holds water in the soil and cleans the water and the air. We can sit in the shade, listen for the voice of God, and read Bible stories to our grandchildren.

Planting a tree is like praying for peace. Pray for peace today and plant a tree.

Peace,

(brother) Bill

Psalm 139

1O Lord, you have searched me and known me.

2You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from far away.

3You search out my path and my lying down, and are acquainted with all my ways.

4Even before a word is on my tongue, O Lord, you know it completely.

5You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me.

6Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is so high that I cannot attain it.

7Where can I go from your spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence?

8If I ascend to heaven, you are there; if I make my bed in Sheol, you are there.

9If I take the wings of the morning and settle at the farthest limits of the sea,

10even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me fast.

11If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light around me become night,”

12even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is as bright as the day, for darkness is as light to you.

23Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my thoughts.

24See if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

Isaiah 44:9-17

9All who make idols are nothing, and the things they delight in do not profit; their witnesses neither see nor know. And so they will be put to shame. 10Who would fashion a god or cast an image that can do no good? 11Look, all its devotees shall be put to shame; the artisans too are merely human. Let them all assemble, let them stand up; they shall be terrified, they shall all be put to shame. 12The ironsmith fashions it and works it over the coals, shaping it with hammers, and forging it with his strong arm; he becomes hungry and his strength fails, he drinks no water and is faint. 13The carpenter stretches a line, marks it out with a stylus, fashions it with planes, and marks it with a compass; he makes it in human form, with human beauty, to be set up in a shrine. 14He cuts down cedars or chooses a holm tree or an oak and lets it grow strong among the trees of the forest. He plants a cedar and the rain nourishes it. 15Then it can be used as fuel. Part of it he takes and warms himself; he kindles a fire and bakes bread. Then he makes a god and worships it, makes it a carved image and bows down before it. 16Half of it he burns in the fire; over this half he roasts meat, eats it and is satisfied. He also warms himself and says, “Ah, I am warm, I can feel the fire!” 17The rest of it he makes into a god, his idol, bows down to it and worships it; he prays to it and says, “Save me, for you are my god!”

Hebrews 6:13-20

13When God made a promise to Abraham, because he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore by himself, 14saying, “I will surely bless you and multiply you.” 15And thus Abraham, having patiently endured, obtained the promise. 16Human beings, of course, swear by someone greater than themselves, and an oath given as confirmation puts an end to all dispute. 17In the same way, when God desired to show even more clearly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he guaranteed it by an oath, 18so that through two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible that God would prove false, we who have taken refuge might be strongly encouraged to seize the hope set before us. 19We have this hope, a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters the inner shrine behind the curtain, 20where Jesus, a forerunner on our behalf, has entered, having become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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Comments on: "Planting Trees 071511" (2)

  1. Thank you for suggesting that we all plant trees. I planted 18 new trees this spring. A storm this week took out one of the River Birch and I was sad and wondered if I had planted it deep enough. It was growing beautifully.

    Peace Be With You…from a Catholic friend.

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