A couple of years ago, my dad and I removed a tree that was slowly dying, from my front yard. Once the tree toppled over, he and I were left with a stump that had no intention of vacating the premises. After hours of digging, kicking, and then thinking I could hide it with some type of decorative garden object, I gave in and called someone to remove it. With both the tree and the stump gone, I found myself with quite a large area of brown dirt, in the middle of my front yard. I seeded and watered and some of the grass came up, but patches of dirt still remained, giving that area of my lawn a lumpy, spotted appearance. Yesterday, I went out to the car and I noticed something. Warmer temperatures and a steady rain had caused our snow to melt, and it was almost as if it had melted just enough that I would see that in place of what had died and been removed…what had been an inconvenience and eyesore…now was evidence of what I had hoped for.
I consider myself a patient person, but even I at times become frustrated and less than patient with the growth process. I want “it” to be fixed now – without the hassle and inconvenience to what I had scheduled and without the digging down deep and honestly addressing the root of what hinders me from being who I was created to be. But what I have and continue to discover is that without the inconvenience, the reckoning, and most importantly the healing, there will never be growth. You know what’s beyond incredible, though? Growth is very possible if you want it, and are willing to take the gritty journey of transformation.
When we go it alone, we ignore the barren areas of our life. We make excuses, allowances, and sincerely believe that if we can replace the disappointments and fears, we have experienced, with the hollow promises, trinkets and ornaments of this life, that somehow we won’t have to speak to what is dying on the inside.
Friend, it doesn’t have to be that way.
Like that tree, formerly a resident of my front yard, I had to make a choice that I was no longer going to ignore truth. I needed help. I wanted more for my life. I wanted hope. For me that and so much more came by way of my faith in God. I am not who I was a year ago, let alone 5 years ago. And I am beyond thankful for that! He continues to lovingly, and patiently guide me in the process of growing into all that He wants for me to become. My life — your life — is like an endless field of trees and flowers that God continues to prune, uproot, and place just in the right location. And if we are quiet for just a moment of time, we see that under the thaw of winter — the inconvenience, the pain, and ultimately the healing — something has been growing and Someone has been at work all along.
And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.