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Saturday, April 4, 2009

Never Give Up!

How Does Your Garden Grow? Part 6
Our house faces the south. My husband tells people we live on the south loop of Tipton (it's a joke). For those of you who may not know, Tipton is a town of less than 1,000 and has only one light. Not a stop light - just a flashing warning light at a 4-way stop. Since we are the last south street in Tipton, across the street is out of city limits and it is a field. So, the front of the house gets straight south wind and hot, hot wind in the spring and summer. But despite that, every spring I get excited! I like to plant flowers. I look for pretty colors and spend time getting it all ready. Last year my parents gave me money for my birthday and I bought flowers. I got a gift card from my in-laws and I bought a wreath with flowers on it for the front (south-facing) porch. I also bought one of those small garden flags - you know, the pretty little ones?

A week after I got the front area all fixed and looking nice, we had a wind storm. It blew and blew and blew and blew and blew (do you get the point??!). It blew all day and all night long. The next day, I went out to look at my flowers, my wreath and my flag. Some of the flowers were gone, containers were dumped, the wreath was missing several things it had had, and my little flag was no where to be found.

I asked myself, “Why do you do this every year?” “Why do you try planting flowers knowing that south wind is going to blow hard most of the time?” Why? Because flowers are pretty. Planting and watching them grow is neat. It’s something the kids enjoy, and my husband and I enjoy. They remind us of God’s creation of beauty.

The next day, guess what I did? I went out and bought more plants!! I know. It sound ridiculous!

In our lives, the winds are going to blow, the storms are going to come, and even the weeds will pop up their ugly heads more often than we want them to. In the garden of our spiritual life, just like in our flower or vegetable garden, we shouldn’t give up. If we give up working in our flower or vegetable garden - give up watering, give up caring for it - that garden will die. If we give up working on our spiritual garden, we will not be doing God’s Will, but our spiritual garden will also wither and die..

Galatians 6:9 says, Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

Our spiritual gardens, just like real gardens, need care to help them grow. By Growing with God (Part 1), Abiding in Jesus (Part 2), Reading His Word (Part 3), Deepening our Discipleship (Part 4), Expecting Weeds (Part 5) and striving to get rid of them, and by Never Giving Up, our spiritual gardens will grow to maturity.

After a seed is planted and grows and grows and reaches a certain stage of maturity, the flowering plant will begin to bloom. Well, guess what? GOD WANTS YOU TO BLOOM, TOO!

Maybe you don’t feel like blooming. Maybe you want to keep growing, you’re content with the way thing are now and you don’t want to change anything. But God says, “BLOOM”! Bloom and show your beautiful flower! Maybe you don’t want to bloom where you are. Maybe you want to bloom somewhere else. You want to be transplanted. But, God says, “BLOOM!” Show your beautiful flower! Maybe you feel too old, too young, too tired, or too busy. Maybe you want others to bloom and you don’t care to. But, God says “BLOOM!” Show your beautiful flower!

GOD SAYS "BLOOM WHERE YOU ARE PLANTED!!"

To bloom is to fulfill your purpose in life. Ephesians 2:10 tells us that God had specific works in mind for each of us (uniquely each of us!)before we were even born! What an awesome thought! "For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."

Doing the job that God has give you to do the best of your ability. Blooming is doing whatever you can for God where you are - where you live - right here and right now. We all want to live some day in Heaven with God.

I pray these lessons will help you as you grow your spiritual garden. Remember to BLOOM!

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