There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch from his roots shall bear fruit.
(Isaiah 11:1 NIV)
Jesse was David’s father and through this bloodline, we were given the King, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. The branch, in this verse from Isaiah, is a metaphor for the Messiah. A stump isn’t much to look at, but out of this stump comes new life for us.
As I walk the beautiful Haskell Campus, I see no life in the landscape anywhere. The trees are lifeless with no green on them; the grass is brown and dull. The flowers have all disappeared. But we know when the spring comes, there will be new life in the trees, lawns, and flower beds. A stump, like a tree in winter, looks like nothing until God brings new life.
In God’s creation, we see his fingerprints everywhere, and when we look even closer, we can also see his plan for salvation and new life. The plants in winter that look dead come back to life. Likewise, God takes a dead man and brings him back to life. As we celebrate the birth of our Savior, let’s remember it was his life that brought us a new life.
God, thank you for your Son, Jesus, who came humbly to this world and lived humbly during his time on earth. Thank you for the ministry you have created in Lutheran Indian Ministries and the Haskell LIGHT House which helps to lead our Native brothers and sisters from death to life. Strengthen us as we carry out your calling to reach Native peoples with your Word. In Jesus' name, Amen.