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  • Writer's picturePastor Jim Stultz

Cottonwood Praise


During an early morning walk my ears caught a faint rustling sound off in the distance. I looked around at the trees and it seemed that not a leaf was moving. Then I noticed that about a half block ahead of me there was one tree that was producing all the sound. While the leaves of the neighboring trees barely moved, the leaves of the cottonwood tree seemed to be applauding with joy in the slight breeze. For my next few walks I observed my friend the cottonwood tree and listened for his standing ovation to the heavens.


I wonder how sensitive we are to the slightest blessing from the Lord. Do we respond in praise to the Lord when He sends us answers to our prayers? Are we thankful for our health and the daily provision of food, clothing and shelter? Do we respond with a grateful heart and vocal praise whenever we are blessed with even a slight heavenly breeze?


In the gospel of Luke chapter 17 Jesus met ten men who were consumed with the disease of leprosy. They appealed to Jesus for mercy. In healing them He instructed the lepers to go show themselves to the priests. As they went, their leprosy was healed. What a joyful occasion for those ten men. After they showed themselves to the priest so they could return to society, one of them just had to come back to Jesus, fall at His feet, and give Him thanks. Jesus asked the newly healed leper: “Where are the nine? Were there not any found who returned to give glory to God except this foreigner?”


The blessings of our Almighty God daily blow into our life. His refreshing breezes restore our souls and delight our hearts. I wonder if we notice. I wonder if we return like the grateful leper to give God our wholehearted thanks. Let’s determine to be like the cottonwood tree, who gives God a standing ovation of praise for even the slightest heavenly breeze.

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