[T] he wind blows over it and it is gone, and it’s place remembers it no more.
Psalm 103: 16
I have a couple of friends with green thumbs. When I buy plants or flowers, I ring them up to ask them to help me plant them. By “help,” I actually mean they do the planting. They know so much more than I do.
Most of the time.
With the exception of the one time my friend, Lisa, and I planted some Clematis.
“Where do you want them?” she asked.
I pointed to a telephone pole holding up one end of our porch swings.
“I’m going to build up around the plant because I don’t want to make the pole unstable by digging under it. ” Lisa worked steadily. After she tenderly placed the soil around the second flower, she murmured, “This one is going to take off fast with this Miracle Grow.”
That night I said happily to my friend, Susan, “We planted the flowers. I didn’t know it would be so easy. We just had to add dirt to the plant. We didn’t even need my shovel.”
“What? That’s ridiculous!”
Everyone I told, expert or not, let me know what they thought about that method.
“Planting means digging.”
“They can’t grow roots if they’re not planted in the soil.”
“The roots will get exposed with the first rain.”
“The dirt will blow away.”
“That’s it. Lisa’s fired.” I laughed at my latest adventure. Rather, mis-adventure.
Lisa had placed them the way she thought they would grow best. You can’t manufacture sincerity.
In problem-solving mode, Susan stepped in. “You meed a trellis.”
“What happens if they’re planted but there is no trellis?” I asked.
“They just lie on the ground … and do nothing.”
Thank goodness for Susan. I knew then that my Clematis would thrive. She would train the flowering vines to climb up the trellis.
When I thought about my failure to plant my Clematis properly, I discovered a strong parallel to my Christian walk. For several years, I had lived like that Clematis we planted above ground.
I sincerely went to church. I was baptized. I spoke about God sometimes, especially to my Christian friends. I talked a little bit about Him to my secular friends. I had short bursts of growth once in awhile.
But that life wasn’t ROOTED in Christ. I still made decisions based on the advice of others, and not by praying.
My faith was lying on the ground but not doing much.
I wasn’t impacting the world for God. I was exposed to the elements every day. I sincerely thought I was living the right kind of faith-filled life but I wasn’t producing flowers of faith. If I were, my flowers never grew very big. Lots of them broke off their stems, did somersaults in the air and blew away.
My faith had never been tested.
I didn’t know that planting my faith meant my roots had to attach themselves to Christ’s base and grow up from there–and that God’s Word was my Miracle Grow.
I didn’t know what it meant to have roots enriched by His soil. So I couldn’t know the joy of winding myself around and climbing up the life-long trellis that the true master planter had provided for me.
Do you like to plant flowers or a vegetable garden? Many people find parallels to their life while planting. Have you ever experienced a life lesson through a mundane activity like this?
Amy Bovaird is the author of two best-selling books Mobility Matters and Cane Confessions. As a speaker, she talks various topics based on life experiences to educate and inspire others. Living with progressive vision and hearing loss due to Usher Syndrome, Amy blogs about the challenges she faces yet still finds humor around almost every corner. Sign up for her newsletter below!
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