You know that saying “bloom where you’re planted?” I like it, but what about the times you feel like you’re just the dormant seed in a hole covered with dirt?
Last year, just as I was about to start working on illustrating my next book, I went through a brief season of depression during which I was incapacitated to engage in daily life. Once the Lord brought me out of it and I began to work, He really spoke to me through the imagery of a garden, specifically the image of a seed. A seed is weak. It goes into the ground and dies in order to sprout new life. It cannot do anything of itself, but only can trust the Gardener will provide all it needs in order to grow and thrive. In my despair over that season of depression, I felt the Lord say, “Wait on Me. A plant cannot water itself. A plant cannot weed around its roots. A plant cannot make the sun shine or the clouds release rain. It abides where it’s planted and it trusts its Maker to bring what it needs to flourish and bear fruit.”
After hearing this from the Lord, I read in Hannah Whiteall Smith’s A Christian’s Secret to a Happy Life: “Abide in the Vine. Let the life from Him flow through all your spiritual veins. Yield yourself up utterly to His lovely control. Put your growing into His hands as completely as you have put all your other affairs. Allow Him to manage it as He will. Do not, as children do, keep digging up your plants to see if they are growing. Trust the Divine Husbandman absolutely, and always. Accept each moment’s dispensation as it comes to you, from His dear hands, as being the needed sunshine or dew for that moment’s growth.”
I felt like a tiny seed covered with dirt when I was bedridden. But I also felt the Lord saying, “Wait on me. Trust me to lift you up at the proper time.” He was reminding me that all things are gifts from His hands, even me getting out of bed this morning. I need to be reminded of this daily, as I so quickly take all these gifts for granted. All things are from Him alone. He is good, and can be trusted. We need to shift our minds to embrace our weakness, so that we will remember and know that it is on Him alone that we rely. In 2 Corinthians 12:9, Paul writes, “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”
If you are in a time of darkness and seeming fruitlessness, trust that the Lord will direct your season in a way that will produce good fruit. Trust that promise even when you can only see dirt and weeds, even when everyone else around you seems to be sprouting and blooming. Abide where you’re planted. God will take care of the blooms in His time.
Jessica Blanchard is a graphic designer and a stay-at-home mom. She is the cocreator of the Baby Believer board book series. She currently lives near Washington, DC, with her husband and three children. See more of her work at www.jessbstudio.com.
Her latest book, The Kingdom of Heaven, uses the many allusions to gardening in the Bible to teach little ones about God’s kingdom and their role in it. To learn more about this title and the other Baby Believer books, click here.
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