Before James Garfield became President of the United States, he was principal of HiramCollege in Ohio. A father once asked him if a particular course of study couldn’t be simplified so that his son could go through by a shorter route.
“Certainly,” replied Garfield. “But it all depends upon what you want to make of your boy. When God wants to make an oak tree, he takes a hundred years. When he wants to make a squash, he requires only two summers.”
Life offers up many opportunities that circumvent paths in life that build strength of character. Many times we’re faced with decisions that need the Oak mentality but the squash route is an alternative. In almost every instance in life we’re given the choices, whether its finances, heath, or children, or believing in Christ.
We can have the squash attitude and believe in Jesus as he’s portrayed by the main-stream world, or we can go the oak tree route and spend time discovering who Jesus really was. Squash is easy, all you have to do is believe what another man tells you, right or wrong, you go along. You follow traditions handed down by generations before and don’t rock the boat. It makes you happy and those around you happy, all is well in this world.
Having an Oak tree mentality when it comes to Jesus makes you stand out, different from the rest of the world. It makes you resistant to traditions of man; you become hard to the facts not bending easily to wives tales. Because you spend time growing in Christ your roots become firm with few questions where our spiritual nourishments resides.
Are you oaks, or are you squash? This probably is the most important question of our generation, but few know the question much less, the answer. An Oak knows it’s an oak and knows its place in the Kingdom, but a squash only knows it’s a squash because someone told it, it was a squash.
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