Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Bloom Where We Are Planted. . .

It has survived through hurricanes and almost drought conditions. It has lived with total neglect. Each year I expect to find it dead, and each year it continues to surprise me.

About fourteen years ago, our dear friend J.J. gave our youngest daughter, then about six, a rose bush to plant. Our daughter Emmie had expressed some interest in growing plants and since her middle name is Rose, the choice of flower was obvious.

She and her father picked the site for the bush, they dug the hole and planted the tiny rose bush. At first I guess the bush received some attention, but not for long. A rose bush doesn't hold much thrill for a six year old and it doesn't demand much attention from a busy preacher. For all I have heard of persnickety roses, I didn't give the rose a chance at surviving one year, much less fourteen.

Yet, starting about March of each year, this neglected little bush begins to create roses of the most beautiful color, most of whom are perfectly formed with a gorgeous fragrance. You really couldn't ask for much more from a rose. The roses continue on until fall. Since we rarely have a hard winter, we will often find a deep pink bloom on the bush even in December or January.

What is it that makes this neglected little bush bloom with such beautiful roses?

It is quite simply doing what the Lord told it to do. It is fulfilling the eternal purpose He created inside the rose bush. . .to grow roses. The bush didn't ask if it had the perfect situation or surroundings. It didn't ask if there would be an abundance of people to care for it and then to admire the results of its actions. Once planted, it simply went about doing what the Lord put into it to do.

Ah, may I learn from the little rose bush. May I bloom "where I am planted" without first expecting the perfect situation or circumstances. May I not care if there are people to take care of my needs and desires or to admire the results of my actions. May I only seek to do what the Lord has worked in me to do, to seek to fulfill His eternal purpose in me through Christ Jesus. May I be content, like the little rose bush, to bloom as long as He gives me season, to His glory and His glory alone.

"For it is God which worketh in you
both to will and to do of His good pleasure."
Philippians 2:13

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