Image 1: Green and Vibrant
I walked out my front door this morning and the first thing that crossed my mind was: “Wow! When did that happen?!?”
I was caught off guard and pleasantly surprised by the way the world turned green, seemingly overnight. Grass is growing, the tree filling with leaves.
Not long ago I thought winter would never end in Buffalo. The wall of green outside my door was a great reminder for life:
In the darkest and coldest of winters, when it feels like the hard season will never end, slowly change occurs, often undetected. One day we will wake up and exclaim, “Wow! When did that happen!?!” Hope will return and new life will be vividly on display.
Image 2: Wilted and Dying
On the way to campus today I stopped by Trader Joe’s. While paying, a manager walked up, handed me some potted flowers, and told me to enjoy! Oh how this felt like such a gift, a beautiful reminder of God’s abundant grace; I think I smiled the whole way to campus. I didn’t have a chance to stop back at work or home and despite my concern for the flowers on this hot summer-like day I had no choice but to leave them in the car. I hoped that since these flowers survive just fine out in the heat when planted in gardens the same would be true in the pot.
Unfortunately, that was not the case. I returned to the car to find them discolored, wilted, dead.
Also unfortunately, it kind of mimicked how I felt at the end of my day. Nothing particular was hard about this day and lots of amazing things actually happened. Yet, I felt like these flowers were a perfect representation of my wilted spirit.
As I drove home processing it all, a comment from the Trader Joe’s cashier popped into my head: “Oh, and if you plant them, they’ll come back again.”
That’s it! Often when our hopes and dreams wilt or even die, we throw them away as useless. But, if we put in a bit more effort, aren’t afraid of getting a little dirty, and plant those dreams, perhaps they’ll bloom again.
Image 3: Broken and Shattered
Each Wednesday this month some other young adults gather in my home to explore faith and life together. We’re currently studying Psalm 31 and talking about committing everything to Jesus. Tonight our conversation centers around brokenness.
The speaker describes a mirror that shattered in the house he shared with his friends back in college. In this story, some guys just left the mess, laughing about the way in which it was broken. For those that did help clean, some of the pieces of mirror were swept under the couch, others were rearranged into a collage with super glue, others were ignored and left alone.
When life shatters do we hide our brokenness? Rearrange it to try to make it look better? Ignore it? Laugh at it? Or do we let Someone, Jesus, come in and heal the broken places with hope?
What does your life look like right now?
Green and vibrant?
Wilted and dying?
Broken and shattered?
Three images. One message: Hope.
Spring is coming.
Dead dreams can bloom again.
Shattered lives can be healed.
Jesus is enough!