Do you ever feel like your life is like a garden in winter? As if everything is dead; no flowers, no fruit, not even any leaves; no matter how hard you work, its as if you’re fighting against the very elements – with no sunshine or warmth nothing can grow.
These periods are hard to go through in your life, it is so easy to lose hope that you’ll ever flower again.
But if you think about it, there are not many gardens that don’t make it through the winter, before long you can see tiny buds appear as the bravest of plants push through the ground. And I have found this to be true in life too. Sometimes the harshest of circumstances can last for so long that it feels almost cruel, but we can always have faith that we’ll move beyond it.
There’s a few verses in the bible that talk about this, it says “When you put a seed into the ground, it doesn’t grow into a plant unless it dies first. What you put in the ground is not the plant that will grow, but only a bare seed…Then God gives it the new body he wants it to have.” (1 Corinthians 15:36-38)
Sometimes life seems full of disappointments, hurts and failures, and it can feel like God is putting each of these bad things in your life to test you, or worse.
But how about we turn it around and see these simply as dead seeds, something that given time and the right conditions will grow into something beautiful, something bearing fruit.
What conditions does it take for dead seeds to grow?
– Rain: If the difficult time in your life feels like incessant rain and rising floods, remember this is so necessary to allow stuff to grow. It’s all part of the cycle.
– Sunshine: Nobody can live with no sun at all, and although sometimes it feels like its pretty rare, you’ll always find some (see an earlier post for more on this – https://bethanywheeler.wordpress.com/2013/05/24/midnight-sun-and-polar-night/). Seek out the sun; find stuff, people, activities, places that make you smile, where you feel warmer, and stay there a while.
– Food: As a christian I know that I need to feast on good food for the soul if I’m going to get through hard times. Often its the things I read and learn in the good times that I rely on when things get tough. For me, this is the bible – a whole load of truth that God wrote for me in every season of life.
– Time: I think I would find life easier if I was better at waiting, if I didn’t want everything NOW. Waiting is how we learn patience, perseverance & trust, and often the most precious treasures can be found in those waiting times. (I also wrote a post on this a while ago – https://bethanywheeler.wordpress.com/2012/07/20/trust-waiting-and-patience/).
You and I can know that God has good plans for our lives, that He knows what He’s doing and that He cares about how we feel about the way things turn out. So when you’re in the harshest of winters you can have hope that before long spring will come, in fact if you look hard enough I bet you can see some little buds pushing through the ground.