Elephants love stripping the bark from trees to get to the nutrient rich moist layers beneath the bark. However, trees are clever so they excrete tannins that make the tree bitter to try and stop the elephants. However, if enough bark is removed, the tree will die even if it has perfect soil, plenty of water and sun. The reason is that the bark protects the tree from attack from insects, weather, and fire. God provides for all our needs. He gives us all the spiritual sustenance that we need to survive. However, without our bark, without our protection, we can easily die. Paul describes the armour of God and says, “In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one” (Ephesians 6:16). We must surround ourselves with faith. It’s this shield that protects us from the fires and attacks of the world. It’s faith that protects our heart and mind allowing God’s gifts to bring about growth and fruitfulness in our lives. Grow in faith.