You Can’t Have Transformation Without Loss
Let’s be honest here. I have a yellow thumb. I am eager for transformation, but find patience in waiting on the evolution of color. Greenery has become a color of solace and a signal for life. “Locally grown” taking on a new meaning as we’ve focused inward on our own seedlings. I’m not talking about my garden or our new vast varieties of landscaping at our home…I want to go deeper.
Surface Beauty Without Commitment
I previously chose low maintenance and esthetically pleasing. I wanted surface beauty without the need for excavation or root tending. My heart, though kind, was the same depth as the infancy of the newly planted annuals and wasn’t ready for transformation. Half of the plants are fake in my home. I couldn’t keep the real ones alive. I didn’t commit to the time and nurturing needed to grow beautiful plants.
It May Take Getting Muddy
Then a storm came through and ripped out the loosely rooted beauties I loved looking at. I found the wrong worms on the vegetables; eating in abundance and leaving us with soiled leafy greens. The soil needed love even more than the uprooted plants and trees, and it was a lot of work. My hands and knees had to get muddy. I cringed as I climbed beneath low hanging bushes to prune the wilted dead portions killing off the rest of the plant. Pieces had to be removed for new life to form.
The Power of Community
We needed help. We had to call in reinforcements and specialists. My tears could have watered the entire garden. In fact, collectively they did. When you’re pulling out the old it hurts. But, after a storm, community comes together to cut down the fallen trees, to pick up debris, to check in on homes and health.
God Gives Back Your Joy
In the midst of the mud and debris, God provides bits of joy and life. Newly birthed bunnies bring joy and laughter. Hummingbirds bring peace. Dragonflies linger to bring silence and splashes of color simultaneously. The snakes scatter because you are working the grounds now. You know every inch. You replant every pot. You turn over every rock. You nurture the resilient greens that held on. And you plant new. It’s a transformation.
Just as you plant new in your flower bed or yard, you can plant new in your heart and life. God offers new wine to pour into your new wineskins. You see, He cannot pour the new joy and love He wants you to have into your old life. He wants to give you new life and new purpose. You just have to be willing to give up the old.
This may feel like only a personal journey, but so much of this process revolves in our professional pursuits as well. Are you dry and lifeless in your current pursuit? Do you feel purpose within your placement? Are you planted in the right place? Are you being nurtured by the right gardeners (mentors)?
If we only focus on our inward garden, perhaps even the intimacy of our home and then mindlessly plant ourselves day by day in a nutrient starved soil, we too will lose life in those places.
I don’t propose that your place of work is lifeless, instead perhaps your heart posture towards it is? Or maybe, in fact, you were created to bring life to different gardens through your unique blossom.
Today, I encourage you, assess where you are planted and ask God if it’s where He intended you to be.
Mark 2:22 And no one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the wine will burst the skins, and both the wine and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins.