Beauty Grows from Trials
By Mark Hershey
“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.” Psalm 139:14
I love woodworking, and I love wood. One of my favorite things to work on is wood burl. No one knows for sure what causes it, but it is widely believed that it is caused by an injury to the tree, by severe stress, or disease.
Most burl will appear as a growth, or a misshapen part in a growing tree. While it may appear ugly on the outside, when it is opened up, worked, sanded, finished and the inside is exposed, you will see amazing beauty in the wood. This beauty comes from the continual growth as the tree is healing from its wounds or stress. The swirling grain is not only more beautiful, it is also much stronger than the normal straight grain of the tree. The burl is almost impossible to split apart, where the straight grain will split apart easily.
As I was thinking about this, I realized that God can, will, and does do the same for us. If we continuing to grow, face challenges, work through hurts and stress, but look to God to heal the damage in our lives, we will come out stronger, and more beautiful than we ever were before, as only God can make us.
We need to allow ourselves to open up to God and to each other to expose this new beauty created in our lives by these trials and scars. We may never know how us opening our hearts and allowing people to see the scars and the beauty that God has made of it will impact other people’s lives
We also need to open our eyes to the beauty of the same growth and change in other people’s lives. The grain is never the same from tree to tree. Each has its own unique and wonderful pattern, just as no two people are the same. God has touched us each uniquely and created in us his own imprint and pattern of beauty.
Prayer: Lord, thank you for being right there with me through all the trials and struggles in my life. They have formed me and made me who I am today, and without Your love to carry me through them, I don’t know where I would be. I am forever grateful You carried me through and made me stronger for them. Amen