Monday, May 7, 2012

Simply His

Every spring I go through a test of faith.  Oh, it is not any big traumatic occurrence or event, but always experienced through a tiny seed and a little dirt.  What is it about a seed placed in the ground mixed with a little water and sunshine which produces this renewal of life?   I never tire of the miracle, the hope, wrapped up in a seed.  
I love working the dirt in the spring.  It seems time comes to a halt as I crouch low to the ground and so very carefully place a seed, wondering if that dry old thing will indeed sprout.  I guess it brings me near to my childhood when I relished carefree afternoons on the rare event that the sun actually found a blue sky to cast its rays.  I would lie on the ground, basking in its heat while observing the minutest speck of dirt on the pathway and the random ant marching by on a mission.  The seed, it cannot hurry, but rather must rest, be still, and move at the pace God has set for it. 

However, I am not very patient in waiting for seeds to germinate and finally break the surface of the earth with their tiny sprout of green.  I count the days when they are expected to appear and each day late causes some anxiety thinking they have rotted in the ground, that I buried them too deeply, or forgot to water them one too many times.  But what joy and relief I receive from seeing that plant come out of the ground.  Ah, at last, little seed, you made it! You have proven victorious!
Then, when the plant has grown to proper maturity, at just the right time, the bud blooms with a grand finale flourish.  This is what it is made for!  So much splendor in a flower.  Petunias, iris, honeysuckle, snapdragon, peonies, each so unique, but together they make my back yard simply glorious.  I drink in their combined fragrance as the breeze blows through my open window.

I'm reminded of the fragrance and beauty of followers in Christ.  Each of us different, but each adds to the scent of the whole, the powerful unmistakeable aroma which identifies us as His.  But how easily our own preoccupation with self can turn that into a stench.  It is a constant battle, this squelching of self, stomping it under the foot of the cross like a weed . . . narcissist, relentless in its persistence on being in the foreground.  I have to daily maintain Christ on the throne of my life, or by default self takes over.
 I recently littered my flower beds with moth balls in attempts at stopping some persistent critters from thinking my yard was theirs.  But all I did was destroy the delicate scent of the flowers that I love so much.  The critters simply hop over the moth balls, undeterred.  My children do not even enjoy the yard anymore because as they say, "it smells bad".  I'm reminded at how easily the fragrance of Christ can be overpowered by my selfishness and pride.  How my life is then avoided like the plague because it smells so badly.  Lord Jesus, remove the moth balls in my life today so I won't repel others from your presence, but rather draw them into it. 
Lately this verse has grabbed my attention.  "Seek the LORD that you may live."  Amos 5:6  Most assuredly the choices I make are life and death choices.  Oh, they do not seem like it, but when it comes down to it, to live selfishly does end in death.  My choice to seek after the Lord with heart, soul, mind, and strength is what brings life.   It is hard to go against my sinful nature and so often I give in to it.  But when I think of the beauty and aroma of a flower it encourages me to fight it, because "flowers of tomorrow are in seeds planted today".   Flowers can't be forced.  They must be given time to bloom.  So I cannot force the fragrance of Christ.  It must be developed in my life through consistent waiting and resting.  But oh the joy . . .

No comments:

Post a Comment