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Week 20 Bible Reading: Romans 5:1-5

Tough Trees

We also have joy with our troubles because we know that these troubles produce patience. And patience produces character, and character produces hope. - Romans 5:3–4 ICB

Bristlecone pines are the Earth’s oldest living trees. Some are estimated to be 3,000 to 4,000 years old (that’s up to 2,000 years before Jesus was born!). Another tree, Methuselah, is 4,850 years old! It was old when the Egyptians built the pyramids.

Bristlecones grow atop some mountains of the western United States at elevations of 10,000 to 11,000 feet. They’ve survived some of the harshest living conditions on Earth: arctic temperatures, fierce winds, thin air, and little rainfall.

Their brutal environment is one of the reasons they’ve survived. Hardship has produced great strength and staying power in those old trees.

Do you think that might work for people? The apostle Paul says yes! He said that troubles lead to patience, which teaches us character (Romans 5:3–4). God can use the tough things we have to go through to make us stronger. If we lean on Jesus because of a bad event, it can become a good thing.

Let’s say you had a bad day. After you pray for God’s help, then ask Him to make something good come of the crummy stuff you had to go through. Then you’ll have hope. And that’s what makes you want to start all over again tomorrow!

Fun Fact

One more old-tree story. There is a Bristlecone pine that lives near Methuselah that is 5,067 years old, scientists say. These trees are in the California White Mountains.

Just You and God

It’s pretty cool, God, that the Bible says that even after trouble comes, good things follow later. I need to remember that.
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We are thankful to Bishop Dr. T. Jeyakumar and Rev. Dr. Herbert Tan for their permission to use and adapt some of their materials in this website.

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