He was only about three or four at the time, and since my mother enjoyed walks in the great outdoors, he was her constant companion. Mom loved to tell the story. Big brother grew increasingly quiet during this walk. Older now, he noticed more and understood his surroundings a bit better. What’s wrong? Mom asked, only to discover his despondency was caused by the trees. They had lost their leaves, and everything was now dead. He didn’t want them to be dead, his little heart struggling with a loss of something he had only recently begun to appreciate. Pondering her response, Mom kept walking and tried to explain that the trees were only sleeping; sure, the leaves were dead but…
She happened upon some low hanging branches, and, to her delight, they were red-tipped with winter buds. Snapping off a branch, she knelt down to his level, as was her custom, and explained how each of those buds was simply a leaf waiting to grow. In fact, they were the promise of life – of spring. Leaping up with excitement, the little boy grabbed the branch from her hand and began waving it above his head joyously, “Buds for sale! Free winter buds for sale!”
My retirement would be covered if I had a nickel for every time she told me that story. It didn’t just tickle her because of his innocence, it touched her intimately because of the promise it quietly made: this wasn’t the end – it was the sign of better things to come, a new beginning.
When we are despairing at things lost, we can be assured that God makes all things new. When we are tempted to be afraid, we can rest in peace because no matter what seems broken, lost, or dead around us, God is good, and He provides for us.
Revelation 21:5 And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.
1 Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.