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When did it grow?

February 10, 2007

“The Chinese bamboo tree is one of the most remarkable plants on earth.  Once the gardener plants the seed, he will see nothing but a single shoot coming out of the bulb-for five full years!  That tiny shoot, however must have daily food and water.  During all the time the gardener is caring for the plant, the exterior shoot will grow less than an inch. At the end of five years, however, the Chinese bamboo will perform an incredible feat.  It will grow an amazing 90 feet tall in only 90 days!  Now ask yourself this: When did the tree actually grow?  During the first five years, or during those last 90 days?

Chinese bamboo

The answer lies in the unseen part of the tree, the underground root system.  During the first five years, the fibrous root structure spreads deep and wide in the Earth, preparing to support the incredible heights the tree will eventually reach.


You may be liked Chinese bamboo, my friend you may be working and dreaming and planning and persevering, yet you feel as if God is taking forever to flower your dream into any visible result. Wait patiently on the Lord.  You are growing, even if the growth is underground, hidden deep in your character.  In due time, God will reveal everything he’s grown and you.  Those who wait on the Lord will never be put to shame.” (Quoted from Flashpoints by Stephen Arterburn)


As I struggle, waiting to see my dreams and desires come to life I have been reminded of this image/example. It is my hope that my life right now is like the bamboo that is building roots. I don’t feel like much is really going on which is frustrating at times. I want to grow, and be useful. For now though, I am trying to be patient and to wait for God’s direction about what comes next. May each of us have ears to hear when that time comes for God to call us to something more.

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