Last week when I was pulling our trashcan back around the side of the house, I noticed a little something growing by the side of the driveway, pressed right up against the concrete. It was a short plant with star shaped leaves that were rough like a cat's tongue. There, growing right alongside our driveway, was a squash plant, with three yellow-orange blossoms already on it.
I have no idea how that squash plant came to be there or grow, as I have never planted squash anywhere around our house, and even if I had, it would have died almost immediately. What a reminder it was though, about all the good that has been springing up unexpectedly. This is how our God gives gifts- they grow quietly, unnoticed, until one day there are all these blossoms all over and they surprise as as we're wading through the mundane. We've seen this as both a promise, and as a reminder. We've seen this in the way our little boy has grown from the size of an apple seed to the size of a cantaloupe, and in the way some friends are moving closer as others are moving further away. We see it in the way He takes up our cause when we don't even know what we need, and the way He nudges others to act on our behalf.
Sometimes we can't see the gifts, we can't see God's hand of goodness in our lives, and we don't realize that that's because He's patting down the soil over the seed, watering, tending, planning to surprise us with His kindness. It's like my friend Ryley said, "I know I will question his goodness again, because I'm human and we suck, but right now I've never been so sure of it." In Ecclesiastes, it says that there are seasons for everything- a time to plant and a time to pluck up. You've seen Footloose, you know this. Things grow in seasons. There are times where we see His goodness everywhere, and times where we have to believe that He is planting something good, something that will grow to be strong.
I don't know what stage you're at- if you're rejoicing over an unexpected (or even a long-awaited) blessing, or if you're mourning over a hope that has withered, but I know that one of the ways God works is to bring life from ashes. He works in the pattern of death and rebirth- not just death for death's sake. Here's praying that God will sustain you with His kindness, and surprise you with His generosity.
And let's carry this hope with us,
Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and his servants will worship him. - revelation 21: 1-3