Spring is by far my favorite time of year. Grass starts to green, wildflowers bloom, trees bud. It is a time of freshness, a time to witness God’s creativity and beauty firsthand, a time to be inspired.
I am not a plant person. As much as I love them, I am terrible about tending them. My knowledge base is extremely limited to start with and with my consuming schedule of writing, working, and tending the more important young shoots in my life (my children), there is true danger of neglect for any living thing in my vicinity.
Over the years I’ve found a few hearty varieties that can survive my sporadic care. I have two beds of knock-out roses, some potted geraniums, and potted aloe vera that all survived not only the summer last year, but made it through the winter as well. (I actually remembered to bring the geraniums inside before the first freeze. Score!)
But every once in a while a true miracle occurs, and this spring I have witnessed just such a feat. Last year I bought a lovely yellow lily to plant in a pot by my front door. It bloomed once, cheerful and bright, then faded and slowly withered away to nothing more than a sad brown drooping stem. I was disappointed but not surprised. Such is the usual pattern of growing things at the Witemeyer house. Eventually I broke off the ugly dead area then ignored the pot. No water. No love. Just dirt. So it sat all through the summer. All through the winter. I started thinking about buying some geraniums to fill it since I’d managed to keep those alive from last year.
Then I walked out onto the front porch last week and witnessed my spring miracle. In that dry, neglected soil, God had instilled new life. And not only a resurrection of the original single plant, but a multiplication of blessings. Amazing!
I couldn’t help but be reminded of the new life he gives to me. Not only on the day I was baptized and committed myself to following Jesus, but over and over since then. When apathy or discouragement dries my soil and leaves me feeling like I have nothing left to give, he proves that nothing is beyond his power. From somewhere deep in my soul he finds a bulb of faith to resurrect, and like a spring shoot, I start to grow once again.
17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. (2 Corinthians 5:17-20)
I feel this call particularly strongly as a writer of Christian fiction. God has given me the message of reconciliation. A message of hope. Of relationship. A message that while masked in a package of entertaining stories, with God’s power at work, can resurrect dormant or flagging faith and bring it into glorious bloom so that it might bring joy and nourishment to others. That is my prayer, that as God continually renews my faith, the words I write will provide an avenue for him to renew the faith of others.
Depending on what part of the country (or world) you live in, you might not have much evidence of spring showing in your area just yet, but what are you most looking forward to seeing as winter gives way to the season of new life?