~ Grow where you’re Planted

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Seeing this Wild Ginger coming up in the broken pathway reminded me of this phrase.

There are times in life when we wonder how we got where we are. Most times it’s the end result of our own actions. Occasionally, we are clueless.

Either way, the only way to improve our situation is to make the best of where we are until we earn our way out, or until God allows us out.

The way out is always the result of praise and gratitude. With gratitude comes a positive attitude. But praise comes first, not as a result. When we praise in faith, then our circumstances can improve, or our hearts will learn to accept that they won’t.

The result will be praise that is felt from the heart.

We may or may not leave the pavement crack for the company of a flower bed, but either way, with gratitude we will flourish.

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~ Dead Wood

It’s easy to look at the mess we’ve made as dead wood. Every year I have to cut the dead wood out of my Hydrangea. Every year there’s more. It’s a natural part of the life cycle of many woody shrubs and all trees. A certain percentage of the limbs and branches die off, and more grow in their place. Think of them as the equivalent of human hair. It doesn’t mean there is rot or disease, it’s just part of the process.

Now take that thought and apply it to the mess you’ve made of your attempts. Is your life (and possibly your home and office) filled with the clutter and refuse of attempts that went awry or projects that didn’t make it past the planning stage? Don’t beat yourself up! This is a normal part of the process of growth.

Rather than agonize over the failures, look at your mess as proof that you’re alive, trying new things, attempting to be and do more. Then get out the pruning shears and get rid of those things holding you back, reminding you of failure, and taking up valuable space in your life. Learn from God’s natural process. If you don’t cut out the dead wood, then the new can’t grow. There is no space, or light or air.

Breathe in those wonderful life-affirming verses that you love, and then tackle just one pruning job today. Nothing brings hope for the future like new spring green growth. Make room for it in your life.

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation;
old things have passed away, and look, new things have come.”
2 Corinthians 5:17 HCSB

“The thief comes only to steal, slaughter, and destroy.
I’ve come that (you) may have life, and have it abundantly.”
John 10:10 ISV

~ Rooted in Love

uprooted tree - Debbie Richardson

~ Rooted in Love

By my friend, Debbie Richardson

“Yesterday when I was reeling in the initial shock of things I went to the beach to feel God’s grace wash over me. He showed me the roots on these trees.

See them? All dug up and exposed?

Then I looked up to see wide beautiful branches heavy with new growth and greenery. God showed me that a tree can still thrive in conditions that pound the soil away from the roots. Exposed roots, while a little ugly, still function.

I’m going to thrive with my gnarly old roots because they are working just fine. It may not be pretty, but the tree holds fast and continues to flourish.

How’s that for a little lesson at the beach? God always meets me where I am. . . .”

~ I do believe my friend Debbie has learned one valuable lesson; that regardless of what others may think, she truly is on her way to perfection.

“There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.” ~ 1 John 4:18

~ Self-Help is Rot

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This picture and the title may be all you need for this God-Glimpse.

Our very best efforts to repair ourselves turn out like this–a bad idea made worse by lack of experience, resources and patience.

Rot started the problem. A section of the rafter had to go before the fungus spread to the rest of the roof. We paid someone to repair the roof,  but noticed a couple of years later that the roof was sagging again, in the same location. It wasn’t enough to remove just a section of the board, the entire rafter should have been replaced with new. No wonder the roof was sagging!

It’s not enough to get rid of sin, bad habits or even weaknesses; they must be replaced with the proper support, or the roof of our good intentions will soon leak and eventually cave in.

Only The Master Carpenter has the experience, resources and patience to repair the rot of our lives. Only His Word is strong enough to shore up the roof over our heads.

Replace the old rafters of your life with new Living Words from the Father of Life.

God Glimpses #29~ Are You on the Level?

on the level

A certain child I know was ecstatic when she was able to install this shelf in a catawampus closet so that the level read level. That bubble was dead center. It took grit, determination, and more than one attempt. I was so proud of her.

I was not so proud a few months later when she was caught in a lie.

“Are you on the level?” She swore she was. A little fact-checking proved she wasn’t.

Level is level. There is no wiggle-room. It’s like that math at issue. The answer is the answer. Truth is truth–or it isn’t.

Lord, help me to keep my bubble dead-center when your Spirit asks for my answers, cause I’m tired of shimming up to make myself look better.

God Glimpses #19 – Seeds of Hope

sycamore seed balls

Yesterday’s post dealt with hope deferred. When I took this photo, the sky was a beautiful blue, just begging me to look up.

Sycamore seeds. Fascinating textured globes of promise. In my minds eye they are broken all over the driveway, as they will be soon. They’re smashed from the impact of falling, squashed by tires, blown into fluff bits, and floating in the wind in tiny segments. They’re everywhere! They’re landing in my flower beds, in the lawn, heading for the soccer field across the street . . . if they make it past the hedge of trees.

“Just DO it” reverberates from yesterday.

“In the morning sow your seed, and at evening do not let your hand rest, because you don’t know which will succeed, whether one or the other, or if both of them will be equally good.”  Holman Christian Standard Bible (©2009)

 

God Glimpses #18 – Hope Deferred

snow on flower pots

The Bible says “Hope deferred makes the heart sick.” All winter long I’ve been ignoring these flower pots on my back porch, pretending the watering can doesn’t exist, pushing down dreams of spring green.

This morning, (after not one flake of predicted snow fell from the so-called snow storm earlier in the week,) I woke to find this not-so-sugar coating still falling from a sky that should have been blue.

(Shoot the weather men and women, please!)

We have no control over the weather. We can justifiably feel sick at the thought of another cold day with even the emerging crocuses looking frozen and miserable.

But do we defer our own hope? What dreams and goals do you have that could be achieved if you would just DO instead of dream . . . or wish . . . or pretend to hope. I don’t know about you, but I’m great at setting goals, not so great at remembering to look at them by mid-week.

DOers get things done. It’s that simple. Spend less time planning, and more time DOing. That’s my God Glimpse for today, folks. He sprinkled frosting on my misery and reminded me to look up (. . . and then go DO.)

God Glimpses #15 – Sticking with it.

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We pulled up to a traffic light next to this artist, who was using his steering wheel as an easel.What struck me was the dedication. The painting was incredibly good, and the van was pretty grubby. (looks pretty good in the photo compared to reality)

This guy  is obviously not getting rich with his talent, but he’s not letting that stop him. God created him to create, and he’s creating. That’s sticking with it.