Are you living in or out of the packet?

seed-packets

In honor of Earth Day, I wanted to share a story with you about the little seed.

There once was a little seed that was comfortable and content to live within the confines of the seed packet. It was safe, warm and others surrounded him. The little seed couldn’t imagine anything better. This has to be the perfect way to live, the little seed thought to himself.

All was well until the fateful day when the gardener came into the shed and took that seed out of the packet. The seed didn’t know what was going on or why the gardener would choose to take him out of the familiar and place him into the unknown. Things went from bad to worse for the little seed. You see, the gardener didn’t just take the seed out of the packet; he placed that seed down in a hole and covered it up with soil.

The little seed cried out. He was now cold, alone and scared. Why would the gardener be so cruel? What good could possibly come from this situation?

The seed stayed in this hole for quite some time. Occasionally, the hole would become wet, which made the seed shiver, but the sun seemed to continue to warm the soil even if the seed couldn’t see it. Over time the little seed started to change, it began to sprout and push its way through the ground to reach for the warmth of the sun.

The little seed was no more; it was now a beautiful plant standing strong in the master’s garden. The winds of life would blow, but its roots where firmly planted. With continual care from the gardener, that plant produced fruit for all to see.

If the seed would have stayed within the safety of the seed packet and not placed into the cold, dark hole it never would have brought forth such fruit.

The very same thing is true in our lives as well. We may be completely content and comfortable where we are, however, God has other plans for us. If we are going to produce fruit for Him we have to go through some dark times and struggles. But those will only serve to make our roots in Him stronger.

So the next time God is nudging you in a different direction, don’t fear the change. Think of the little seed and embrace it. You never know what all God has in store for you until you are willing to be used.

When Things Don’t Go According to Plan

life-is-a-journey

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.  – Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV

While I was growing up I had formed in my head what my life was going to look like. I had everything planned out to create the ultimate picture.

I would graduate from college and get married. We would enjoy our time as newlyweds before having two children. The four of us would live in a quaint house with the white picket fence. Ah, I could sit back and just enjoy my family. It was picture perfect.

However, in my picture I did not account for reality. In my life this included; divorce, a miscarriage and cancer. That is only one side of the coin on the other I was also blessed with an amazing husband who loves the Lord, five incredible children and a writing career.

A certainty of life is that no one can plan out or predict how it will play out. There will be twists and turns as well as peaks and valleys. The only way to successfully navigate through life is by allowing the Holy Spirit to lead you every step of the way. It may mean going through some struggles, but God knows what is best. He is the only one who sees the big picture. The experiences you go through can not only strengthen you, but also enable you to reach out to others. God will not waste one thing. He uses everything ultimately for good. We simply need to surrender to His leading. Don’t let your plans hold you back from God’s best for you.

Dear Heavenly Father, I thank You for the truth found in Your Word. May I allow You to guide me down the correct path. Help me to cling to You even when the struggles in life come. I know that You have a perfect plan for me. May I completely surrender to You. In Your Precious Name, Amen.

So, what about you? Did you ever have a plan that failed? If so, could you see God’s hand in what happened next? What sort of “new beginnings” have you experienced in your life? Let’s talk about that today.

Spring Cleaning

spring cleaning

With Easter in the rearview mirror and warmer weather on the horizon, it’s time to begin the dreaded — Spring Cleaning. I remember as I was growing up helping my grandmother thoroughly clean everything, including wiping down the walls. It was a time to open the windows and breathe in the smell of spring. Although it requires a great deal of work, it is necessary and rewarding. Continue reading

The Art of Losing Yourself – Book Review

art of losing

Being a fan of Katie Ganshert’s first three books, it was no surprise that I was thrilled to be selected to receive an advance copy of her latest book, The Art of Losing Yourself.

I devoured the book in just a few short days. I was drawn into this elaborate story world Katie created within the confines of the first and last pages for her characters. Carmen is dealing with her own issues when her 17 year old sister, Gracie, comes to lives with her and her husband, Ben. Over the course of the novel, the reader has a backstage pass to the ups and downs of their lives Continue reading

Friday Fun – Character Game

reading

Today, we are going to try something a little different. We are going to be playing a game together. The more of you that participate, the more fun it will be. I would like you to think of the last book you read. Okay, do you have it in mind? Alright, you are now the main character in that book. In the comment section, I would like you to share what you are doing? Let’s see if we can guess what books are friends are reading? On your mark… get set… GO!

Friday Afternoon Fun

fun in the sun

Before I announce this week’s winners, I would like to share a few moments with you. The weather is getting warmer and the white space on my calendar is filling up faster than the clothes in the kids’ hamper. If you can identify with this I would like you to take just a few minutes and watch the video. I hope that it will bring a smile to your face as you greet the weekend. Continue reading