Friday, May 12, 2017

Rooted in Love



I don’t know if you have ever noticed this in your life, but for me recently, it seems like there is a central theme that has become a focus in my life – at home, work, and church – right now.

It’s this whole idea about being planted and what you produce!

This past week the message at our church was focused on this very same thing:

It is like a mustard seed, which is the [smallest of all seeds] on earth.  Yet [when planted, it grows and becomes the largest] of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds can perch in its shade.” Mark 4:30-32


A little take away from this.


For me, it's how sometimes I get so hung up on size.
SIZE!
How dumb is that?!


Just keeping it real my friends.


But we're reminded about the mustard seed; the smallest seed planted in the ground...yet when planted, grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants.


Friends, no matter our size, or what we've been given, or what gift or talent we have...We have been planted for a purpose!


But sometimes, we don't see ourselves as being planted but rather as being buried.


You're NOT being buried!
You're being planted!!


Etch that into your mind!


Sometimes that means you're going to have to change your perspective!
Sometimes you're going to have to take what's pushing you under and have FAITH that God is doing something below the surface and He's working it all together; growing you and preparing you for something greater!


The size of what's planted will never be the same size as what is produced!


You MUST see the tree in the seed!!!


And this is where I'm currently at in my life, if I can just be transparent.
I'm a people person who really is not a people person...if that makes any sense whatsoever.
I love building people up, I love encouraging others, I believe God puts people on my heart when they need it most for me to pray for them.


And I truly do believe we are so much better together!


However, I don't like being in the spotlight and I certainly don't like speaking in public. 
And I often feel out of place in crowds of people.


So I've found my little comfort zone in sharing my heart via social media, blog, texts, notes in the mail, simply praying. And I know, my name isn't one millions of people recognize or even know. And I know, I may be a small voice in the midst of an ocean ​of noise.


But I also know that just taking my little seed and letting God plant me for something greater will show that size matters not!


God has a purpose for each of us...do you have a seed? That's all you need!

Which brings me to the real reason for this blog – over the past several weeks, we (well really just my hubby) finally have our front flower gardens looking pretty!


I actually came home one evening last week, later than normal due to an appointment, and knew as soon as I turned the corner that something looked different.  As I got closer, I could see that it was our garden!!!  I’m not one who loves surprises…but this was the BEST surprise!


Phil’s work schedule has been crazy busy and he just didn’t have time to put into it…but he knows how much I love this time of year when everything is just bright and blooming and blossoming – so much color – almost like everything is speaking LIFE!


Everything in my flower garden speaking life with the exception of my lilacs.


And, see…what had happened was…


We had a new guy come cut our lawn a few weeks ago.  And I didn’t even think to mention to him about my small, still trying to grow, lilacs. 
So when I went to go water them the day after, I found that they had been run over by the lawnmower and taken down to the bare bones, barely noticeable from the ground at all.    


And my heart just sank.
I asked Phil to take a look and he assured me that they would be ok.
That the actual roots hadn’t been touched.
They would just need time to heal and we would see life again.


To give a little more info on these lilacs, they actually came from shoots that my mom had cut from her grandparent’s home.  She planted some at her house, gave me two that I planted at our house.  And my mom actually gave some to a friend of hers to plant at her house.
I did a little research on lilacs and found that they are often considered to symbolize love. 
And looking at my lilacs, this has been swirling around in this head of mine…

 This is a photo of the lilacs that actually came from my great grandparent’s home.
Full of life!  Roots that run deep and have weathered the extreme year after year for decades - freezing temperatures to the highest heat from the sun, rain, sleet, snow, hail, high winds, even tropical storms and hurricanes.   Roots that have continued to sprout and show beauty no matter what comes their way.


Much like love.
They have held their ground and continued to reach out no matter what.


And here’s photos of the shoots that were planted at my mom’s house:


As you can see, there is life to them, too.  Not as full and vibrant as the first, but strong enough to stand high and sprout leaves and possible flowers this spring.  They are still getting their roots grounded and finding their place in this world.  But reminding themselves where they came from and the strength of love that initially supported their shoots. 
And here’s the photo of the shoots that were planted at my mom’s friend’s house:


Stronger and full of growth!  They are doing SO well that she is even able to take her own shoots to pass on to her granddaughter to plant at her house.
A reminder that love carries on.

And finally, here’s a photo of what I am now seeing of the lilacs at my house:



I wish I had thought to take a photo of what they looked like just a few weeks ago.


But look at them!!! 
Starting to show life!
But not before I had to put walls around them…to protect them from the outside and what was coming at them.


Not before I gave them some extra love; “food” to help nourish and extra water each night to remind them that they CAN live again.
A reminder that love doesn’t give up on you.



And as Mother’s Day is approaching, I was overwhelmed with how these lilacs reminded me of what motherhood is like, well at least for me.


I come from a love that is strong and rooted deep.  
It’s actually beautiful when you take time to really look at the love my family shares. 

And even though I started out small, I have planted roots and now have a family of my own.  My family has grown so very much in the past 13 years…so that love I grew up with continues on.
And although our roots aren’t as deep, and have been cut down to the ground at times, they are strong enough to weather the highs and lows that have come at us, and we just take the needed time to come back stronger each time.


Our girls have friends that we are able to “love” and nurture and I’d like to believe that love will carry on, too. 
Hopefully, you’re still with me at this point.
All I really want to say is this – We are leaving a legacy.  Each one of us.  I encourage you to plant your seed and see the tree.  Remember that sometimes you’re going to feel like you’re being buried with what may come your way –  or even feel like maybe you didn’t come from deep roots.  If I could encourage you today - choose to push your own roots down a little farther and let it start with you.


Years down the road, may your great grandchildren be able to look back and say, I came from a lot of love!
Ending this with how I feel...I want to leave a legacy and these few lyrics from Nichole Nordeman say it all:
“I want to leave a legacy

How will they remember me?

Did I choose to love?
Did I point to You enough
To make a mark on things
I want to leave an offering
A child of mercy and grace
Who blessed Your name unapologetically
And leave that kind of legacy



xox,
Jenny

1 comment:

  1. In our morning prayers together, today, mom and I thanked God for our 42+ years together as husband and wife and for the love that He put into our hearts. We also thanked Him for how He often times reminds us NEVER to take that love, or each other, for granted. Sometimes the way He reminds us is by placing us in circumstances that test how deep and genuine our love is for each other. Our spouses are gifts from God. Our children are gifts from God, Our grand children are gifts from God. It's up to us as to how we express our appreciation and thanks for the gifts. I choose gratefulness and love.

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