Luke 17:6 — He replied, “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you” (NIV).
Today I want to take a closer look at the mulberry tree Jesus mentioned in the above verse. The roots of a mulberry tree can become a nuisance because they have a tendency to travel along the surface of the ground. When this occurs, the roots can be a trip hazard to unsuspecting feet.
In order to prevent such a problem, many people plant their mulberry trees with a root guard around the root ball of the tree. This guard helps encourage the roots to grow down deep before they spread wide and create a surface root issue. When we apply this information to the life of a believer, it’s easy to see why Jesus used the mulberry tree to illustrate offense.
When someone is offended, a mulberry tree is planted in his or her life. If the person is able to forgive, the tree will not take root and is easily removed. Unfortunately, many people harbor offenses because they empower the emotions that come with them. Every negative emotion gives root to the mulberry tree, or offense.
Like mulberry trees, the roots of offense often grow on the surface of a person’s life and can be hazardous to others. Many people live their lives governed by their feelings, and if those feelings are the product of offense, everyone pays. A life controlled by emotion is volatile at best, and when the roots of offense run close to the surface, someone is going to get hurt.
Other people put a root guard around the emotional hurt they incur from offense. This causes the roots of offense to shoot down and go deep. These people mask their pain and try not to bring attention to themselves. They appear okay, but they are dying inside because of their unhealthy emotional state.
Perhaps you need to forgive today. Is someone walking on eggshells around you? Forgiveness is not a feeling; it is a decision. Most people choose not to forgive because they don’t feel like it. Don’t be led by your emotions. With forgiveness comes freedom!
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