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A tree in the rocks

"While David was at Horesh in the Desert of Ziph, he learned that Saul had come out to take his life. And Saul's son Jonathan went to David at Horesh and helped him find strength in God,” (1 Samuel 23:15-16).

When we were living in central Arkansas, one of our favorite places to go was Pinnacle Mountain, located just west of Little Rock.  As the picture suggests, it's not more than a glorified hill --- about a thousand feet in height and takes about an hour to get from the base to the top.  Anyone can climb it (especially the west side), so it makes for a great family outing.  
I remember one occasion when Janice and I went by ourselves.  We'd had some beautiful fall weather and wanted to take advantage of it so we got up one Saturday morning and drove to the park. We decided to go up the east side which is a little steeper and consists mostly of rock scrambles.   We were a little over halfway to the top when it started to rain (so much for that beautiful fall weather!).  It wasn’t a downpour, just enough to make the scrambles slippery.  We found a little cave nearby and waited there for the rain to stop.  We were soon joined by three other people.  Despite out collective wishes, the rain kept falling.  Our three companions decided to head back down while we decided to continue to the top and then take the west trail down, since it would involve more walking on trails and less rock scrambles. 

Ascending a mountain is more challenging aerobically, while descending is more challenging in terms of safety.  One false step can mean a painful fall on unforgiving rocks.  Therefore, you look for sure hand and foot holds (especially when it’s wet).  One of the things you can take advantage of is the small trees.  Grabbing a branch or even the trunk of the tree can provide stability and security.  It still amazes me that a tree can grow in the middle of all of those rocks, but I was thankful they did.  Those trees were our friends!

A real friend is like a tree growing out of the rocks.  They are there for you in the tough times, when you really need them.  You can grab hold of them and they will steady you.  They are security on the slippery rock scrambles of this life. 

David had that kind of friend in Jonathan.  Paul had the same in Barnabas.  It made a difference for them. 

Make a difference for someone.  Be a tree in the middle of the rocks.  Help someone find strength in God!

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