As my last post stated, I am currently enjoying all that Spring has to offer...the rodeo, flowers, butterflies, sunshine, great weather, hummingbirds, newness, a little break from work, and gardening. This past Sunday I decided to dig up all that the freeze killed in my yard, buy some new plants, and re-plant some beautiful newness. I was so excited and God provided such a beautiful day! So I headed out to a great nursery, picked out my most favorite flowers, plants and herbs that I could afford, some mulch (notice that I did not say soil), and headed home. I got home, plucked out all the dead plants and threw them away, and carefully "miracle-growed" and planted all my new beauties. I then watered them all and stood back to behold the beautiful sight. I was happy with my effort. All the while I was in a bit of a hurry though b/c I knew that I had to get ready for night church soon and I wasn't going to miss it. So after I rushed through the process, I just as quickly got dressed and rushed out the door for church (which was a great service by the way.) But that night it hit me, as I lay in bed, that I hadn't planted in soil, only mulch. What was I thinking? Could they survive? Early the next morning (yesterday), I presented that question to my gardening father while it was fresh on my mind. To which he replied, "No, plants cannot grow in mulch. They need soil." AAHH!!! I knew what I had to do and set out to do it immediately. I hurried and bought soil and headed home and had to re-plant EVERYTHING!!! I did just that, covered them in all the mulch that I had just bought, and then said a prayer. It was done. Now I just had to wait and see.
I then quickly headed out to the rodeo and enjoyed a night there last night. I was so thrilled to hear them open in prayer...Glory! I have never arrived early enough to hear them do that. I had a good time there (as I always do) but am sad to say that my night didn't end as glorious. I legitimately got upset about something while there but instead of just addressing it and letting it go, I stubbornly shut down for the rest of the evening. I struggle with doing this a lot. When I went to bed last night I was frustrated that I had let that incident ruin my night. I awoke this morning and presented my dilema to God in my QT. To which I felt Him ask me to look up stubborn and shut down in the dictionary. He is funny that way. :) I discovered the following...
Stubborn: Tenaciously un-willing to yield, not responding to treatment, obstinate, persistent manner, difficult to handle/manage or treat.
Shut down: Cease to operate or cause to cease operating, to settle so as to obscure vision, close in, to make ineffective in competition.
Hello...those are horrible things and inherited traits that I don't want to be and I no longer want to hold onto! I pleaded with God for a breakthrough and had a powerful QT about this with my Jesus. At one point I had just finished reading Psalm 115 and then looked out my window at my new, pretty flowers and a hummingbird at his new feeder, and it hit me...the parable of the sower.
You see, those flowers would have lived for awhile in the mulch that I had stupidly :) planted them in, but they could not have rooted and thrived. Just like me. I can coast along in life simply knowing Jesus, knowing I will make it into Heaven, and allowing a few changes here and there, but if I don't stay rooted in the word of God with a teachable Spirit, then I will not thrive in the abundant life that He has called me too. And that, my friends, is what we all want and need...just as Psalm 115 talks about. I've said it before and I will say it again, we are here for His Glory! And in order to bring Him Glory we must stay deeply rooted in Him and His Word. I know the things that usually trigger me to stubbornly shut down, and I must now humbly catch them and choose truth. And the coolest part about God's Glory is this...He doesn't just cut off branches, but He also brings newness of life!!!!
Just as my yard was looking like a frozen, dead, barren and ugly wasteland, so had my life start to look over a year ago. I was trying to "grow in mulch," not looking to Jesus but other things, and beginning to look like my idols (lifeless...see Psalm 115.) But then, He plucked me out in order to re-plant me, and it hurt...as His Glory always does. I was fruitless for awhile, but I was establishing roots. But now, just as it has turned from Winter to Spring, I have begun to bear fruit, and all Glory to God! It's just like baptism, like the cross to the Resurrection. We are buried with Christ, and raised to walk in newness of life! Hallelujah! But in order to bear fruit and thrive, we must dig our roots deep in Christ and His Word, allow Him to trim off the dead branches, and THEN we will bear much fruit, to the Glory of His Name! Praise God for the seasons in our life! And praise Him for bringing life from death! I am raised to walk in newness of life...Hallellujah! That is in fact my favorite part about baptism! :) Go and do some planting friends. It's so therapuetic. I hope to have pictures of new growth to show you soon! May my life portray it at least! :)
"He who goes forth bearing seed and weeping shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him." Psalm 126.