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Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The Olive Tree

{Trip to Greece, the unpacking continues…}

We started out our day with this great reminder, 
God doesn't call the equipped, He equips the called.

Our task for the day was to pick olives from the orchard.  These olives will go to the press for olive oil.  The profits from the sell of this olive oil will help our missionary partners offer free Christian camp to underprivileged children.  
We placed nets under the trees to catch the olives that fall and to gather the ones we picked. 

 Some were ripe and ready to be picked.  Some were not quite ripe or ready.  Some were high and out of reach, I had to climb into the tree to get them.  Some were low and easy to get.  Some were more difficult and needed to be beaten out of the tree.  Some rolled off the nets and had to be gathered back into the net. Some of the olives were smashed and looked like they couldn't be used.  

I was amazed at how much of the olive trees they cut away, huge branches cut off just to get the olives.  I thought cutting that many branches off would surely kill the tree.  Then there were the branches that I would pick through, and every time I thought I was done….I would flip over the branch and there were more to be picked.  

This brought to mind a visual….
of how God pursues each of us.  

Some of us are grasped easily while others are harder to reach.  
Some of us need to be beaten over the head over and over again (that would be me!) before He grasps us.  
Some of us, like the olives, roll off the net, and need to be brought back into the net.  
Some of us feel like the smashed olive that think they can never be used…
yet God saves us for His perfect plan.  
We are called to be ripe and ready.  
But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, 
and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you
 a reason for the hope that is in you 
1Peter 3:15
And the big limbs that were cut away, reminded me of the sin that remains in m life that the Lord slowly cuts away.  And every time I think he is done, He reveals more pruning yet to be done.  The cutting away of the tree never kills it, instead it allows it to flourish and produce MORE fruit.  Just as the trials in my own life, when I think it is more than I can bear….He allows me to blossom and grow stronger. 
This day was an amazing experience in the pages of John 15

1 comment:

ComeHaveaPeace said...

Love this visual image and the helpful explanation behind the "why" you spent the day harvesting. Sounds like it was time well spent in more ways than one :)