“He that dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” (Psalms 91:1)
I learned to appreciate this verse of Psalms 91 from my Aunt Holly she referred to it as God’s 9-1-1. She pointed it out to me at my Uncle Ellis’ funeral, her Brother. “Grady,” she said “when you feel like you just can’t make it always turn to God and read Psalms 91:1.” I followed her advice and it leads us to this “Oprah Moment” story.
I’ve never been a guest on the Oprah Winfrey Show but I have watched it many times. I’m amazed by Ms. Winfrey and Barbara Walters’ ability to coax people into revealing their most secret personal trials, tribulations and triumphs. I’m going to share a personal story-experience that I and many Christians have lived. This is a teaching experience, it did not happen exactly like this, but I think you will appreciate the message all the same. Trust me, if you have not had this experience, your time will come!
One day I decided to quit…I quit my job, my relationship, my spirituality…I wanted to quit my life. I went to the woods to have one last talk with God. “God,” I said, “Can you give me one good reason not to quit?” His answer surprised me. “Look around,” He said. “Do you see the fern and the bamboo?” “Yes,” I replied. “When I planted the fern and the bamboo seeds, I took very good care of them. I gave them light. I gave them water.”
“The fern quickly grew from the earth. Its brilliant green covered the floor. Yet nothing came from the bamboo seed. But I did not quit on the bamboo. In the second year the fern grew more vibrant and plentiful. And again, nothing came from the bamboo seed. But I did not quit on the bamboo,” He said. “In the third year, there was still nothing from the bamboo seed. But I would not quit.”
“In the fourth year, again, there was nothing from the bamboo seed. I would not quit,” He said. “Then in the fifth year a tiny sprout emerged from the earth. Compared to the fern it was seemingly small and insignificant. But just 6-months later the bamboo rose to over 100-feet tall. It had spent the five years growing roots. Those roots made it strong and gave it what it needed to survive. I would not give any of my creations a challenge it could not handle.” He said to me.
“Did you know, my child, that all this time you have struggled, you have actually been growing roots?” “I would not quit on the bamboo. I will never quit on you. Don’t compare yourself to others.” He said. “The bamboo had a different purpose than the fern. Yet, they both make the forest beautiful. Your time will come,” God said to me. “You will rise high!”
“How high should I rise?” I asked. “How high will the bamboo rise?” He asked in return. “As high as it can?” I questioned. “Yes.” He said, “Give me glory by rising as high as you can.”
I pray that these words can help you see that God will never give up on you. When things are not going your way and you think you’re at “wits end,” don’t do anything you will regret, call upon the Lord. Never regret a day in your life, look to your Christian roots you have what is needed to survive. Good days give you happiness and bad days give you experiences, both are essential to life. “Whoso offers praise glorifies me.” (Psalms 50:23)
Happiness keeps you sweet, trials keep you strong, sorrows keep you human, failures keep you humble, success keeps you glowing, but only God keeps you going. Be blessed and bless someone in Jesus’ name.
Grady Norman Greene, Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Our Christ
- Speedy Bamboo: The Plants You Can Watch Grow! (gomestic.com)