While exhausted and over heated from extreme yard work I didn’t want to stop at whatever was making my son scream at me to, “look Mommy!!” Honesty is ok in a blog right? He tends to be, well, exaggerated when there’s work involved. I expected there to be nothing at all. His job was to make sure nothing was hiding in the 7 in tall grass that was just mowed 9 days ago. Instead he was playing in the passion vine following where all the shoots had attached to the bushes.
A little back story, we planted at spring last year a garden and several other flowering plants around the yard for nectar to work on a summer journaling project. Our friends were all right when they said we would have no shortage of things in nature to observe and record!
Now, fast forward to the simple truth that this passion vine was meant to cover the ugly air conditioner but has fizzled and never even bloomed last year. This year something has been happening to the blooms and they aren’t even opening, unless under the extreme cover of darkness (which is possible).
Currently this vine looks more like a dead weed on a trellis. Sad but true.
Side story, yesterday also was a wake up to a sweet note from a friend of a friend (who I simply adore) that really reflected her heart to be honest and let me know that she had a testimony of God healing me shared at a home meeting in her house. I knew that this had happened, but she didn’t know I knew and wanted to write me a note that my pain, my suffering, my barren moments and the divine healing had been used by God to help others in that meeting. I knew all too well that I have not shared my story of coming so close the sting of death enough. After all, I was given so much life after each desperate valley experience.
My son had stopped yesterday to realize that devouring this vine were an abundant amount of brightly colored caterpillars!
Yes God – I’m listening! I was hard pressed all afternoon to think of anything else but what my heart was aching on; The story of the child waiting in heaven who I believe is being held by angels and is healthy in the vast glory of God. While also thinking that I was so close to mowing over that mostly dead “Florida weed”….oh God, how I would’ve destroyed my own garden bringing forth life.
This morning I woke up earlier than I normally do to the sunrise and decided to open my window and wait till the sun fully engulfed the sky. Butterflies all morning captured my window laying more eggs, soaking up some nectar from nearby plants (hibiscus, salvia, confederate jasmine and fire bush with an occasional stop by the goldfish pond). I know they aren’t supposed to eat nectar from all those bushes, I’m just documenting my observations.
I heard a familiar scripture in my heart, “I raised you up for this very purpose, that I might display my power in you and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.” Now that may have been what God said to Pharaoh but back up one verse in Romans and you’ll hear the main the theme of chapter 9, “it does not, therefore, depend on man’s desire or effort, but on God’s mercy.”
My life has so often seemed like that passion fruit vine; so full of beautiful potential and yet so barren. All the while, God had big plans for His Glory.
Trust me my friend, if you are walking in Faith – there is a plan for His glory even when we scar our hearts in the valley of the shadow of death. If you made choices that landed you in the valley…God can still show His redemption to the world by showing you mercy and raising up life from your story! The scriptures warn that we don’t get to decide whose lives are sacrificed for His sake but if we do what the disciples of Jesus did and willingly give ours away then we can be sure that He will raise us up (Romans 8:10-11) and give us life. I stand in faith and I can look back and tell you that the near death and moments of dying to my own desires has indeed brought forth much life. Not because I did anything but merely because I trusted in a greater purpose and gave in to the journey – Don’t give up my friends! The decay will be pruned, and there is greater potential for life!