Seconds after finishing up paying for my groceries, I glanced over at a cart full of pretty-much-dead-plants on clearance. Just a dollar. Smiling apologetically at the lady behind me and the cashier for my last minute purchase, I quickly grabbed a sparkly pot with a shimmering snow flake decoration, claiming to be a mini white rose plant, and handed it to the cashier. She looked at me extremely surprised at my choice and went on to tell me with hardly an ounce of hope in her voice, unconvincingly, that perhaps with some water it could come back.
Her comment made me smile and hold back a laugh but the heaviness of her lack of hope vibrated inside. She could not see it. She could not see the hope that was there. Her eyes had not been trained to see what was to come or the future, only what was visible: the two drooping buds among the brown, dry leaves. And her actions reiterated what her eyes saw.
I took the little plant home and gave it some water along with some necessary pruning, before settling it in to its new home on the ledge of the kitchen sink. By the end of the day, the drooping bud was no longer down cast but up facing the sun.
The bud has sense bloomed and new buds have formed and bloomed, as well. Slowly but surely, life has been flowing through its little leaves and flowers and though it may not be the prettiest of plants, it has been serving as a reminder of God’s redemption and hope.
Even when we were dead in our sin, God saved us through Jesus’ death and resurrection, not because anything we have done but because of his mercy. There are seasons where certain situations seem dead and we may believe the lie until God opens our eyes, graciously showing us what he has been working along. There may be pruning of dead parts and the need to add life giving substance to our lives in ways only God knows. And then after some waiting or a long waiting, we are given the gift of seeing the birthing of what God had in store all along. His ever perusing, never giving up love that overflows with hope.
Praying as we enter in to Spring and the plants start blooming around you, that the Lord would open your eyes to something in your life that seems to be dead and show you how to approach it. Praying you would have the wisdom and discernment to act according to His leading and have the endurance to keep going forward, even when onlookers tell you it is impossible and hopeless. Rest assured, God will surely show up and be glorified through the process.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. Romans 15:13
Originally posted in The Inspire Monthly newsletter, March 2018.