1 Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.
1 Corinthians 16:13 Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong.
1 Peter 5:8,9 Be sober, be vigilant: because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.
I like to garden and tend plants, weed out nasty things that are detracting from the plants — bugs, weeds, and overgrowth. There is a quietness to the work, my hands get dirty, and I have the satisfaction of a job that shows. The grounds are a bit neater, there is less crowding and everything looks a bit fresher.
A couple months ago, temperatures were in the high 80’s to mid 90’s. I live on a beach on the east coast, and we frequently have a hot breeze blowing, and my plants and flowers were DROOPING. There were no vibrant colors and some actually died, despite watering. There was a sadness to the look of the plants—some leggy – too tall and awkward, like a teen who has had a growth spurt. With this heat, the plants can’t have enough to thrive. The conditions were too hot, the sun too bright, and the heat lasted too long for the plants to thrive, but after a little tending and cutting, they did survive.
Truly, this is often the way our Father tends us. He needs to trim wayward limbs, misbehaving direction, and show us a more healthy way to go and grow.
I wondered if my plants would thrive; as sometimes they are not overwhelming healthy until the next year. But I know when the weather breaks, and I tend them more, all will return to more healthy life. although sometimes not quite as strong as I would like. This is the awkward stage when nurturing and caring still are important, and the steadiness and continued care get us through difficult stages.
As it is with plant care, we all have peeks and valleys, stressful periods and easier times. Although the stressful times are no less difficult, for those who put their trust and faith that God will deliver them through, they seem to get out of the fires of life in better form–a more positive outlook, stronger faith and dependency on God– than those who do not.
Since my faith has grown, I cannot say I do not have periods of stress, but the traveling through to the other side is so much easier now. I say daily to Him that I know He will take care of this problem, issue and He has a plan for me, and will direct my path. I ask Him to show me if there is something I am supposed to do. If not, I just move steadily forward, believing in Him, and the walk itself seems less scary and stressful than it did a few years back when my faith was newer, more conditional and testing.
If we walk faithfully and continue to trust ourselves to His care, as with all things we work toward, our steadfast diligence will get us through and bless us with a reward.
My deepening relationship with Him is the most important part of “mybellaviews.”