Why trees need storms to survive...

It’s springtime and storm season is in full swing. Already this season, tornados have caused death and destruction in multiple towns.

Rightfully so, many people dread the spring tornado season and wish that there were no storms.  But what if you discovered that storms and the winds they bring are necessary for survival. Let’s look at the example of trees.

In the 1980s, a research facility called Biosphere 2 built a closed ecosystem to test what it would take to eventually colonize space. Trees were an important part of the Biosphere as they would help produce oxygen for the people living in the enclosed structure.

Scientists created the perfect growing environment. Everything was carefully planned and provided for, and trees planted inside sprung up and appeared to thrive. Then they began to fall. What happened?

I imagine the botanists must have been confused and frustrated. They could find no evidence of disease or insect damage. There was nothing to cause the trees to topple; the conditions were perfect. And then they realized what was missing—something so simple, yet absent within the confines of the structure: wind.

The air was too still, too serene—a condition that guaranteed the trees were doomed. You see, it’s the pressure and variation of natural wind that causes the trees to strengthen and their roots to grow.  As the wind and even storms blow against the tree, the tree grows stronger roots to resist the pressure.

The trees of Biosphere 2 had all the sun, soil, and water they needed. But without the stress of winds and storms, they could not build strong roots, they had no resilience, and they eventually fell over when they could no longer support their own weight.

Could we have this in common with trees?  Do we need some strong winds and storms in our lives to help us build deeper roots in Christ?
Many people have learned that it’s the difficult or stormy times in our lives that drive us closer to God. Everyone prefers the calm and still parts of our lives, but it’s when the storms are swirling around us that we often reach out to the One who can save us.

Romans 5:3–5 encourages us: “We also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.”

For the trees, God provides what is needed, sun, soil, warmth, moisture and even storms.

For us it’s the same.  Sometimes, the storm that blows over us might actually be helpful and necessary to bring us closer in our relationship with the Lord.

The tough times in our lives helps us to grow our faith and grow our roots deeper in Christ.

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