Thursday, November 1, 2012

A word about Olives

The olive grove at our synagogue.

No, this has nothing to do with a recipe or food critique, haha.

This little thing about Olives has to do with how we all might feel at the moment. 
Anyone stressed? (raises hand) Anyone feel overwhelmed? (raises two hands)
Anyone feel like they just can't catch a break? (Stands up and jumps around)

Haha. The long and short of it is that we are ALL stressed whether it's now or later. Life happens. Circumstances arise that crush you mentally, physically and spiritually. Breakups, jobs, ministry, friends, family, bills, whatever. Life is unpredictable and it is just hard from time to time. I know I spend a lot of time asking God "why can't this season be OVER already?" When you're in the tough times (especially if the tough times last a while) it's hard to see the silver lining. But, there is great significance to what we go through. Each time I go through something awful, I learn something very valuable on the other side. Do we have to have hardships to learn those things? No. But if everything was just handed to us and easy, we wouldn't appreciate it. Mothers go through excruciating labor, but when they look at their precious child, it was all worth it and they keep having kids usually.
 
So, where do olives come into this?
 
In Exodus, when they were building the tabernacle in the wilderness to worship God, He had very specific things He wanted and it ALL had a deeper meaning.
 
 “You are to order the people of Isra’el to bring you pure oil of pounded olives for the light, and to keep a lamp burning continually. 21 Aaron and his sons are to put it in the tent of meeting, outside the curtain in front of the testimony, and keep it burning from evening until morning before Adonai. This is to be a permanent regulation through all the generations of the people of Isra’el"
-Exodus 27: 20-21
 
The way you get olive oil is to press, crush and bruise the olives so the oil seeps out. This oil was used for the Menorah that represented God's ever-burning presence and also for anointing.
 
YOU DON'T GET THE ANOINTING OIL IF YOU ARE NOT CRUSHED.
 
Israeli Olive Press. {Source}
 
That stone above is very heavy and grinds down on the olives to press the oil out. Chances are, if you feel very pressed and crushed, God could be drawing something even more precious out of you than you know. It can be hard to trust sometimes, but He does ALL that He does out of love and our complete and total benefit (in the long term sense) is what is on His mind. Even in the pressing, He sustains us and keeps us from the enemy.
 
" 8 We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed."
- 1 Corinthians 4:8-9
 
Even in our pain, we will not be destroyed. Circumstances don't define us, God does. We are pressed by so much, but out of it God draws the good in us that he can use and anoint in us. Have hope, and don't give up. Being pressed hurts, but being used by God is amazing.
 
Love you guys,
 
~B~
 

 

4 comments:

  1. Such wisdom, girl! Thank you for this! Beautifully said.

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  2. Oh man, today there is definately 'someone' leading my to different and very specific posts in your archive.
    In a lecture at uni trying not to give in and cry.
    What other reaction is there to this kind of grace!


    www.esther-aw.tumblr.com

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    Replies
    1. Oh wow...it's so cool how God does stuff at just the right time...even if that means you're in class haha! So glad this helped :)

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