May post #7
I don't know about you, but I've found this week HARD. It feels like its taken five days to wake up, and that only now (on Friday afternoon) am I beginning to think clearly about what's in front of me.
I wonder if you're feeling similarly this week? Its all been a little hazy...
Perhaps you've been waiting on news about a promotion, or terrified by a huge brave step you took not too long ago that's yet to pay off... Maybe you, like me, have been struggling health wise this week. Or you're feeling overwhelmed by the reality of your every day and, also like me, are struggling to catch your breath.
It's funny, isn't it, that as soon as we begin to pay attention to the process that our hopes, dreams, and consequently all of life takes, all of a sudden we can see evidence of each step of the process all over the place!
Be it in the classroom, where you arrive at the beginning of your day with a plan... and have to simply plough away at it, laying foundations in your class’ understanding and letting them absorb their learning... only ever to be able to see if they 'got it' later on in the day when you're marking their books. OR if you have a big idea, send some emails to see about making it happen... and then the baby is crying, there's laundry to be done, the washing up piles up and it takes all you have to check three days later to see if there is a reply.. and another three to answer it.
Hopes and life and ideas and dreams and process takes BRAVE.
It takes huge amounts of BRAVE for us to even show up for life. And oh so much more BRAVE to go after something new.
For me this week, the BRAVE has been found in making appointments for two weeks time which will be hard, but (in the long run) GOOD. BRAVE has been saying no to things that are too much right now, and knowing that if they're right the opportunity will present itself again later. It's taking a day to REST even though we think 'adulting' looks like carrying on regardless, even to the detriment of our health.
Whatever BRAVE has looked like for you this week, can I leave you with this encouragement...
In life, faith, relationship and all that we do, we spend a lot of time PLANTING seeds... they are seed of ideas, knowledge, love, hope - all of the things! We plant seeds daily. We also prepare the ground daily, and wait. We birth dreams daily too. We don't see everything we want to see happen at once... but if you’re alive, conscious and in relationship with others I guarantee that this process is at work in your life.
This week is PLANT week... it's been hard to write about because it's all a little abstract. But, can I please draw your attention to the story of the mustard seed.
In the Bible Jesus talks about a mustard seed (or acorn). He's using it to illustrate a different point... but the image he gives us of this little seed turning into a mighty tree is applicable to the process that we are paying attention to...
Now I'm gonna quote Jesus...
"...like a mustard seed...the smallest of all seeds on earth...when planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds can perch in its shade."
He says that in Mark, chapter 4 verse 31 and 32.
This image has stuck with me this week. It's an image that has brought me HOPE because even in the tiniest of actions, or the tiniest of hopes there is potential for the largest fruit.
When we do the small things, they can turn into big things. When we think we're just surviving, actually we can be growing. When we're all at sea, there can be growth around the corner. And, when we take that little seed of our innermost hope, and plant it in the fertile soil of our well prepared hearts, it can, in time, grow into the biggest plant in the garden...
The hardest part of this planting business is that when we plant the seed, we can’t see it any more. We can’t check in on it. We simply have to trust that there is hope and there will be growth.
There is always hope and always growth.
In the act of planting we TRUST the process and God to grow a bigger dream than we could ever imagine...
So, friend, take heart. What you see is not the end. The seed may be small... but the fruit will be more lovely than you can yet see...
Here's to that. Here's to hope.