He grew up before Him like a young plant and like a root out of dry ground.
How would Jesus, who was born to people who seemed to be so insignificant, be born in a seemingly insignificant town, have such a powerful effect on the world that was devoid of spiritual life. How does a shoot survive and thrive?
Years ago, there were two olive trees (I don’t think there was anything spiritual about the two trees) in our side yard. A new shoot came up out of the ground, then another, and another, etc., etc. I would cut them down but they kept on coming. Finally, I let them grow until the shoots became a hedge around the trees. How did they grow and thrive? They got their life and nourishment from the roots of the trees. How did Jesus thrive in such a dry ground? His source was the Holy Spirit Who empowered Him.
When Jesus was born, people were hardened to God’s Word. There is no written record of God’s having spoken to His people, prior to John the Baptist, for four hundred years. Despite the enmity of the people, Jesus brought life to all who believed and who would come to believe in Him.
Jesus is capable of bringing life to any individual, society, or culture no matter how hardened or hostile they have become to the gospel. Jesus knows how to penetrate the heart and bring life where there was only bitterness.
The work of Jesus in a person’s life may seem fragile at first, but like the shoot that pushes its way up through the dry soil, it will eventually grow into something strong.
As you pray for someone you care about, don’t be discouraged if this person has not responded to Jesus. The love of Jesus has the ability to move the hardened heart that seems completely unresponsive—like you and I before we surrendered our lives to Him. Amen?