Spring is on the horizon. Everywhere I look life is beginning to awaken. Trees are budding, plants are pushing past the dead and the dirt to reveal the beautiful glimpse of fresh color, new hope. I love this time of year ALMOST as much as Fall.
This was also one of my dad’s favorite seasons, perhaps the one he looked forward to more than any. He was a gardener with a green thumb that I DID NOT inherit. He knew the proper time to begin tilling the ground to ready it for planting. He knew what to plant and when. He knew the perfect spot for planting anything, that spot where the sun would shine oh-so-right. He was patient. In the span of a day my dad knew how to take each step in stride. He didn’t rush, force, or hurry anything. Even when at times the pace he lived life aggravated me. Several times throughout the last few months of my dad’s life he would remind me to slow down, to live patiently, to rest. My dad had hope that whatever it was that brought the storms, they had purpose and would pass. He really did have an ingrained sense of hope. Perhaps that is why he loved Spring and loved gardening.
But too often in life I see the storm. I fixate on the whirl of crazy, out-of-control circumstances that I can’t wrap my head around, let alone fix. I saw the cancer lumps on my dad’s back when my dad was excited and smiling just to be strong enough to go home. I see the endless amounts of dishes, clothes, meals to prepare and house to clean instead of the beautiful treasures that often create those said messes. I see the list of to-do’s and wish-I-could-do’s and the time that is simply lacking for it all. I see the barren garden twigs and worry they will never bloom again, The storm rages and pounds and I turn to all the what-if’s and should-haves and sink deeper into the cloud. Running tired and exhausted I sit in the storm in desperate need of sun, of hope.
Just when I needed it most, this verse camped in my heart this week. In fact, I’ve linked to the entire passage for you HERE because it’s just too good.
May the God of HOPE fill you with all JOY and PEACE in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.”
Did you know that we not only have hope at our disposal, but that it is ABUNDANT? There is an eternally lasting amount of hope to be had, but you won’t find it by looking within yourself. Hope also won’t be found by latching onto the newest craze, self-help method, book, or politician. Hope doesn’t come from anything we can produce in and of ourselves. We see a broken and fallen world and desperately seek for the evidence of hope. In honest to God truth this world, without God, will remain broken and hopeless. That beautiful, sought after JOY and PEACE, the evidence of lived-in HOPE, is attainable only through belief that God and God alone is the source for hope, life, and salvation. God alone is the object of hope for everyone who has ever breathed a minute on this side of heaven. This is a hill-to-die on truth. An unshakeable foundation that must first be established before the storms that empty us can give way to the light and warmth of sunshine, life-breathing SON-shine.
I am taking this to the bank this week. I’m laying chaotic living down to stop, live patiently and be at rest. I’m expectantly waiting in HOPE for those beautiful little green plants to keep on growing, budding, and spreading lovely life and color everywhere. I’m tapping into the source and trusting that there will be HOPE in abundance for today.