Thursday, July 30, 2009

Room to grow

This certainly looks like a strange picture to center today's blog around. When I started this whole blog adventure, I sincerely prayed that the LORD would speak to me through my natural surroundings, His awesome creation. He has been faithful in that way, and I record some of those revelations here.

So what did I learn from these green onions? I guess I'll start with a little background information. The girls and I planted them from seed and they sprouted up nice enough. The package gave directions for us to thin the seedlings to stand three inches apart when they were one to two inches high. Contrary to the growing instructions, I did not thin the plants. I just did not have the heart to yank out all of those green onions. They were alive, I reasoned, and that should be good enough.

The onions grew only up to a certain point and then kind of sputtered out. It didn't take me long to realize that they just did not have enough room to grow. I had not followed the package directions and done what was necessary to ensure a good outcome. Little by little I began pulling an onion out here and there. My daughter and I always tried to eat them, tiny as they were, to lessen my guilt from not letting them continue to grow.

Slowly but surely, as they were given more room to grow, certain onions really began to thrive. This encouraged me to the point where I was willing to pull even more of them out to create more growing space for the particularly healthy ones. The preceding picture was taken after I had finally gotten to that place of being able to pull out a larger amount. In a way it was very freeing to be able to pull that many.

Through this little lesson, my extaordinarily loving and patient Father has shown me that I may not always understand why He calls me to pull certain things out of my life. It might not make total sense to me, and may even seem wrong or cruel. If I will just obey Him when I feel His leading, though, I can see that the outcome will be better. Like the onions, He may just be trying to give me room to grow. Why would I go against His best for me, knowing what I do now? He knows what He is doing and I can trust Him in that.

I hear You, LORD, and I will listen to You.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Unexpected beauty

A few mornings ago I discovered that my mystery flower out front is a sunflower. I've had some of them growing for a few months now, but I didn't know what they were. Could they be zinnias? Maybe. We did, afterall, have zinnias there last year. They might have somehow dropped seeds again.

After a bit it became apparent that we would soon know what kind of flowers they were. One was getting closer and closer to opening. Each day we'd check its progress and look for any clues to its identity. So that's what it was - a sunflower.

A beautiful, unexpected sunflower. We did not plant it. I'm supposing it came from our bird feeder. And now we have this lovely flower. I am reminded that beautiful things can come from seemingly nothing. That's so like our Father. No circumstance is ever beyond His ability to beautify.

"He has made everything beautiful in its time" (Ecclesiastes 3:11).

Lord, help me to trust that You will, in Your perfect timing, bring beauty out of my current circumstances.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Cover Me

A few nights ago I desperately needed to get away for a bit. My loving husband drove me out to this covered bridge even though we'd barely be able to stay long enough to justify the drive. I just had it in my mind to go all at once and he could see that it would help me to decompress.

How thankful I am for him. I look at this picture and it reminds me that I am covered by my husband. I am beneath his protective umbrella and that brings me comfort and a sense of security. His headship and covering has always been extremely important to me. And our intimate moments are just a physical reminder to me of that covering. What a beautiful thing!

Besides the covering of my husband, there is, of course, the covering of God. He is so much more of everything I love about my husband's covering. Actually, He is perfect in His covering. How much more should I feel secure and comforted, knowing the Living God is covering me? I don't even know that I can fathom that.

I've always loved the Bebo Norman song "Cover Me". Here are some of its lyrics:
Cover me, cover up my tears
Cover up this man who's covered up in fear
I need a peace of mind, I need a piece of you
To cover all that's gone and everything that's new
You unveil me with your mercy
I want to breathe you in
You unfold me, then you hold me

Cover up my heart, cover up my soul
Cover up this world and everything I know
You cover up the sky, you cover up the sea
Cover up the mountains and every part of me
Every single breath I breathe...cover me