A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a Branch will bear fruit.
A Shoot Will Come Up
Jesse was the father of King David of Israel, and King David’s family tree of kings was once strong and mighty. But those kings turned away from God. Eventually, Israel was captured and overrun. No more kings came from the line of King David and Jesse. The family tree was cut down, all that remained was the stump of Jesse.
When a tree is cut down, all that is left behind is a stump. The stump begins decaying almost immediately. What was once a strong, living tree is now a dead and decaying stump.
Something amazing happens in nature. That dead and decaying stump can turn into a nurse stump. A seedling falls on top of the stump and uses the decaying matter as compost and fertilizer. The stump nourishes the seed, and a shoot comes forth. Eventually, a whole new tree, strong and bearing fruit, is born from that dead and decaying stump.
Israel’s line of kings was dead, but God had a plan and purpose for the stump of Jesse. God fertilized his plan. He nourished his purpose. At just the right time, a shoot appeared from the stump of Jesse. On a night in Bethlehem, a baby was born to Mary and Joseph, descendants of King David and his father Jesse. That tiny baby lying on the straw of a feeding trough didn’t look like much, but his parents named him Jesus. And that Jesus turned out to be the Savior and the King of all people.
God does some of his best work when it looks like all hope is lost. God is working in you and for you even in the darkest moments of your life. Whether you’re suffering the loss of a loved one, going through a divorce, or dealing with depression. Your life may feel like a stump, dead and decaying, but God can work the shoot of faith to grow in you. Jesus, the shoot of Jesse, came to bring you life. He came to make you part of his family tree. By his death on a tree and his resurrection, you are a son or daughter of the King.
Dear God, grow faith in me so that I can always remain a part of your family tree. Amen.