Heartwood

by Sydney Michalski

But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.

(1 Samuel 16:7, KJV)

Everything looked fine, on the outside…But the high winds of an autumn storm revealed what was truly inside…

After a storm, trees with weak heartwood are revealed...

Heart rot!

There are times when you can see, on the outside, that a tree is damaged, diseased, or dying. And there are times when you can’t tell. At all. Until a storm comes.

A walk through the forest in the aftermath of a recent storm was a dramatic illustration of an eternal truth. In more than one place, trees that looked completely fine and healthy, on the outside, were completely splintered, blown apart, destroyed, and left lying in ruin on the forest floor.

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.

(Matthew 23:27, KJV)

Because when the storm came, and the test was upon them, all of their outward strength and appearance meant nothing, because a rotten heart is destined only for destruction.

But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.

(2 Peter 3:7, KJV)

Heart rot may be a sentence to a long, slow destruction, that gradually seeps its way throughout the tree, eventually becoming visible in outward decay…Or it may be sudden, in the blink of an eye. None of us is promised tomorrow!

Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.

(James 4:14, KJV)

And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.

(Acts 22:16, KJV)

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