I recently visited this beautiful garden that was filled with labels of all sorts of plants and herbs that hadn’t yet sprouted. There were little signs in the ground for the promise of what was to come, but was not yet able to be seen. I was struck by how everything in the garden was neatly laid out in anticipation of the beauty that was patiently waiting for warmer weather.
I came across these two benches facing each other, and I imagined all the conversations that might have taken place there. Maybe a couple enjoying each other’s company by the trickling fountain. Maybe children laughing at the splashing water coming from the mouth of the lion. I pictured people pondering life’s biggest questions, face to face with the person on the opposite bench.
I found myself reflecting in the serenity of this quiet garden. How often do I put signs in the ground, confident that the plan I have will bloom into something magnificent? I can be so sure that my actions will yield results if only I have the perfect seeds. Sometimes I forget that God’s plan for me doesn’t include my own agenda. He has beauty for my life, just waiting to burst through the soil. I can’t always see what he is planting in my life, but I have to be patient that there are so many wonderful things stirring below the surface.
Because I wait for a season that I can feel God, I think that he is not working on me in the meantime. Just like the flowers don’t grow until the spring, I felt like I was staring at that plot of land with labels but no idea as to when anything might actually come to fruition. But I think back to the garden filled with signs delicately placed in the exact spot the plants were going to pop up and I have to remember that God is confident in the amazing things he has in store for me. It is not up to me to figure out what all the signs are and when the flowers will bloom, it is up to me to tend to the soil by doing good work in his name.
Looking at the benches facing each other, I like to think of myself on one bench and God on the other. Here is what I imagine myself saying.
Thank you for planting the deepest roots in your spirit and calling me to grow into something that brings beauty to others. Thank you for putting signs in my life and having the confidence that my life is designed to proclaim your unconditional love and to practice a bold faith. I ask for patience as I anxiously await the seasons where what you have planted in me grows to new heights and what you have asked of me becomes clear. Guide me as I navigate life through the times when I can’t see the signs in the ground because my eyes aren’t lifted to you. Thank you for filling my life with the beauty of your kingdom. May your love be planted in the depths of my soul so that I have the courage to pursue the path you have created for me.