Like Olive Shoots

Olive tree trunks send out an abundance of shoots Psalm 128:3

A gardener or olive grove caretaker (olive dresser?) would never let us see such a sight; growth sprouting from the tree trunk is properly removed or propagated as cuttings. Yet today’s untended olive tree with its shoots abounding and growing at will demonstrate for us the exuberant life within a craggy, crooked olive trunk, an abundance apparently impossible to contain in just one tree. This specimen seems to be crazy to prosper other gardens with more trees, to bless and bless with branches for fruit. If each of the shoots were to begin a new sapling, this tree could easily multiply to become a grove, and so on and so on through generations.

What words would you use to describe this gaggle of new growth nearly overtaking its trunk?











fearless, as in embracing goodness without worry

Your children will be like olive shoots around your table Psalm 128:3

Come to think of it, this tree pictures my week with a household of boys, amplified by the joy of being with their friends (more boys!)…beachside, swimming, jumping; a happy patter of coming and going in chatter-filled play, with an endless, “Tag-you’re it!” around the table, through the house. The shoots are like the vectors of their movement; someone was always whizzing by, sprawling in all directions yet rooted in the kitchen cookie jar! I never cease to be delighted when God’s Word offers garden pictures to describe a moment of my own life.

Yes, this will be the blessing for the man who fears the Lord Psalm 128:4

I feel truly blessed, just as promised, for a week full of energy and fun. Thank you, Lord, for using all things for good (Romans 8:28) – a gardener’s neglect has revealed the vitality imparted in your blessing and prosperity. I praise you for pouring out your peace to handle a happy, hectic household!

Peace be on Israel Psalm 128:6


For more about the Olive tree and adding olives to your cooking, see the Plant Guide

Olives are found in the devotions of the NIV God’s Word for Gardeners Bible, in the Garden Work section on Choosing, page 23 & the Garden Tour section on the Mount of Olives, page 1137.


Photo Caption: Unpruned shoots of an Olive tree in Southern California (not confirmed as Olea europaea) ©2014 Shelley S. Cramm

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