2 Peter 3:18, “But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be glory both now and forever. Amen.” In general, trees have an amazing resilience to embedded objects. If you have ever had the experience of driving a nail into a tree from which to hang an object, you may have noticed that as time passes, the tree will not expel the nail, but instead, grow around it. In fact, trees have been known to grow around metal fence posts or other stationary objects that are located too close to their trunk. Since trees are stationary, they can’t move their existing roots, but are able to grow new roots and expand their trunks by adding more wood throughout the years. Thus, they have no choice but to grow around solid objects. Soon, the embedded objects become incubated within the tree, yet not impeding the growth of the tree. As time goes by we all experience the embedding of foreign objects into our lives. Some may have been well-intentioned while others may have had a more destructive purpose. We can’t expel them. But at the same time our nature is one of growth. It is vital that we do not allow these embedded objects to prohibit the opportunities we have of further growth. Our Scripture lesson today addresses growing in grace. Growth requires grace. Growth requires us to incubate issues that have become implanted in our lives. Just as a tree has no defense against an outside force driving an object into its trunk, so often we may not have any control over what befalls us. But we do have control over how we react. My grandfather Ed Williams had a saw mill. There were times when he would be sawing a log into boards only to have his saw blade cut into a metal object that had been embedded in the tree for years. Outwardly there was no evidence of the object. So it is in our lives. We can so adapt to the trauma of past years that there will be no visible evidence that the embedded object ever existed, because we have refused to allow it to hinder the new growth that we can experience with each new day.
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