Tuesday, March 7, 2017

New Life and New Beginnings

Photo image courtesy of belchonock via 123rf.com
[He has sent me] to provide for all those who grieve in Zion, to give them crowns instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of [tears of] grief, and clothes of praise instead of a spirit of weakness. They will be called Oaks of Righteousness, the Plantings of the LORD, so that He might display His glory.
~ Isaiah 61:3, GNT ~

This is the first scripture Jesus read in His synagogue- beginning His public ministry. 

This is Good News to those of us who might be experiencing a long winter season in real time. Having a daughter with down syndrome has altered the seasons and rhythm of life in many ways. 

But God has made growth and beauty for our challenges. Crowns, Joy, and Praise eventually replace tears, grief, and weakness.

Spring will eventually triumph over winter and New Life will flourish. 

In Jesus, it cannot be otherwise.

Photo image courtesy of altomedia via 123rf.com
Our daughter, Bethany, and 2 of our grandchildren, Finley and Cohen planted flower bulbs of "shooting stars" and "freesia"; carefully blanketing them in warm, rich soil. They sure didn't look like much as we held them in our hands. The seeds certainly looked nothing like the pictures on the packets. 

I can understand why Bethany and Finley kept asking, "Wait!  Are you sure there are flowers in there?” 

How many times have I looked at someone and seen nothing "special"? 

How many times have I looked at myself and asked Jesus, "Are you sure there's anything me that you find beautiful? I don't see anything.” 

How many times have I missed what Jesus is doing because I don't perceive the hidden miracle deposited inside His creation?  

We are the planting of the Lord!

Our Father sees beyond our outer package to the treasure within -- we are His planting.  He holds us in His nail-scarred hands and lovingly buries the seed of life-form under the warm, rich soil of His presence. Under His nurture and provision, we grow and stretch out, past the boundaries of our beginning.

Unfurling our hearts in His presence, we grow and stretch upward, reaching out to His calling of New Beginnings and New Life! 

Everyone can finally see what He saw all along -- the planting of the Lord, flowering for His splendor!
"Yes dear ones, I'm sure there are flowers in there."
Father God,
Thank You for New Life and New Beginnings. Give us faith to see what beyond the outer "packaging" of people- help us seen the hidden treasure within. Give us patience to trust through You the seasons of life. As You transform us, may our lives glorify You. 

In Jesus Name

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