New Life - By Virgil Stripes
Job 14:7-17 (ESV) “For there is hope for a tree, if it be cut down, that it will sprout again, and that its shoots will not cease. Though its root grow old in the earth, and its stump die in the soil, yet at the scent of water it will bud and put out branches like a young plant. But a man dies and is laid low; man breathes his last, and where is he? As waters fail from a lake and a river wastes away and dries up, so a man lies down and rises not again; till the heavens are no more he will not awake or be roused out of his sleep. Oh that you would hide me in Sheol, that you would conceal me until your wrath be past, that you would appoint me a set time, and remember me! If a man dies, shall he live again? All the days of my service I would wait, till my renewal should come. You would call, and I would answer you; you would long for the work of your hands. For then you would number my steps; you would not keep watch over my sin; my transgression would be sealed up in a bag, and you would cover over my iniquity. Every Spring, as trees and plants start to grow again, I am reminded of the song “Wood Hath Hope,” by the St. Louis Jesuits. It is a pleasant little ditty, and is based upon the first part of this Scripture. This Scripture tells us more than just that plants will grow again however. It reminds us that God will cover our iniquity and bring us new life. Job was a man who although righteous, was suffering tremendously. God allowed Satan to test him, because God knew that Job would stand the test. It was rough. But in the end, Job is restored and God honors him with more than he had before and more than he lost. So when trials come our way, we need to not lose hope. God will restore us in His time, when we remain faithful to Him. Is this easy? No, it is not. But If we believe God is sovereign, and that He will vindicate us, it makes it a little easier. Like the trees and plants, God will breathe new life into us. Whether that is just figurative for new strength, or whether we are speaking about when we convert and become new creation, it will happen. For those of us who are already new creation, we can look forward to the day when God will make all things new, and we shall face death, disease, and suffering no more. Alleluia! Come Lord Jesus!