Thursday, October 1, 2020

The Oak and the Ivy

Our travels this year have been limited to trips to the doctors, to Newburgh to visit our son and pick up packages (our mail is delivered to a box at the front of our manufactured homes park, so we must pick up packages at the post office, which we want to avoid during this pandemic), and to the Commissary at West Point, where the military police monitor social distancing, etc. Occasionally, we take a short drive locally.

A few days ago, Bob and I drove south from Newburgh along the Hudson River past West Point, across the Bear Mountain Bridge, and north on the east side of the river to our home in the Town of Fishkill. We love the fall. We were looking for color but found little change yet.

Then I spotted some rich red color entwining the trunks of some of the still-green trees--poison ivy, the first color to appear in fall in our area. 

A chorus we'd sung often in church during my childhood suddenly popped into my mind. I hadn't sung it in years, but the words flowed quickly:

He's the Oak, and I'm the Ivy

He's the Potter, I'm the Clay

He's the Oil, and I'm the Vessel

I'm the Traveler, He's the Way

I'm the Flower, but He's the Fragrance

I'm the Lamp, but He's the Flame

He's the Words I sing to Music

I'm the Bride who bears His Name!

Who can begin to put into words all that Jesus is to the believer? Metaphors help. 

As a writer, I love metaphors. Perhaps that's why I love these lyrics so much. These metaphors give wonderful insights into our relationship with Him. He is our all in all.

Oak trees are strong and solid. Jesus is strong, and we can depend on Him at all times.

The nature of any ivy is to cling. It entwines around tree trunks, climbs up the sides of houses and even up telephone poles, and hangs from wires that cross roadways. 

Poison ivy gives a nasty rash. Our son had such a severe case of poison ivy poisoning in high school that he needed steriod treatments. 

Not all ivies are poisonous. In fact, common ivy, often a house plant, was a symbol of love and friendship in Europe in medieval times and was once traditionally given to newlyweds by their priest. Perhaps that is why many bridal bouquets contain ivy. 

Like ivy clinging to the oak tree, the older I grow, the more I cling to Jesus. Sometimes life has been quite difficult, but Jesus has never failed me yet.

What is your favorite metaphor for what Jesus means to you?

Coming Soon!


No comments:

Post a Comment