Pottering in the greenhouse last week, trying to create some space, I lifted a tray of eight quite big geraniums that had been overwintering under cover. I was really pleased to see that they are already sprouting new leaves and even flower buds. But I should have taken more care and lifted them one at a time. The tray was cumbersome, and as I tried to stop it wobbling in my hands, two of the pots crashed to the ground. “Oh no!” I cried out, as I looked down at the smashed pots, broken plants and soil strewn all over the greenhouse floor. I was annoyed at myself for being so careless, and disappointed that my plants were damaged and broken.
But as I started clearing up the mess, picking up the broken pieces of geranium intending to throw them in the bin, the thought came, “I could dip them in rooting powder and put them in the propagator and perhaps they’ll root, and I’ll have even more lovely geranium plants for the summer!” Sure enough, this week I have been checking on them, and already they are sprouting little roots!
I’m a bit of a careless gardener as you can tell, but, “What a picture,” I thought, “of the redemptive heart of the best Gardener of all, our heavenly Father.” When things go wrong in our lives, it can be so tempting to shun those situations and throw the memory of them into the waste bin of denial. But just as the broken geranium pieces would have rotted and gone black and smelly in the bin, so do those areas of our lives that we despise and condemn. Festering memories of hard and painful periods of our lives, never brought to the light of Jesus, ooze pain, bitter remorse, guilt and shame, maybe even angry, jealous feelings.
Joseph’s story really encourages me. He certainly went through some tough times. He knew what it was to be on the receiving end of the betrayal and disloyalty of those he should have been able to trust, and to suffer huge injustice and tragedy. But he didn’t hide the painful realities of his life in darkness, He brought it all into the light of God’s hands and trusted in His promises. And God redeemed his pain in an amazing way, turning it ‘for good for the saving of many lives.’
Isn’t it so comforting that nothing in our lives is lost, nothing in our lives is wasted in God? He sees every piece of the story of your life, His eye is on every piece. Nothing is rubbished, it all matters to Him. And He waits patiently for us to lift the lid off the dark hiding places, and to bring every piece to Him. And when we do that, He does what we could never imagine possible.
The broken geranium pieces sprouting new roots are only a tiny picture of the incredible miracle of God turning for good, bringing new life out of tragedy, disappointment, injustice and loss. What you dare to entrust into God’s hands, He transforms into something beautiful, new life bursts forth and witnesses the hope we have in Him, for the saving of many lives.
Prayer: Father in Heaven, thank You that nothing in my life is lost, nothing in my life is wasted in Your redemptive plan and purpose for me. You see every piece of the story of my life and it all matters and counts with You. I’m sorry I’ve shut down painful realities and kept them hidden from myself and from You. Please help me to dare to lift the lid off the hiding places of those areas of my life that I don’t like or want, and please help me to trust that as I bring all that I am to You, You can and will make something beautiful, and new hope and new life will spring forth. Thank You that You are a restoring, redeeming God. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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