Hi everyone! I would like for everyone to meet my new friend, Frances. I know…Frances is a plant. But, Frances is not just any plant….she is MY plant! This is saying a lot considering the fact that I am still scarred from spending every weekend cleaning the yard when I was much younger. On the weekends, my brother and I were not allowed to go outside to play with our friends until the yard work was completed…which was almost never. But that’s not the point of this post…so I digress…
When I bought Frances, she had a few sprouts and looked like she needed a little bit of love. She caught my eye as soon as I walked into the store. Although I attempted to ignore her, she won the battle…obviously since she is in my home and I am writing about her, right?
I determined within myself that I was going to be the best caretaker of Frances that I could be. Remembering how I led a previous plant to the grave as a child presented me with great motivation (May she rest in peace…). So I contacted my mother and, of course, she provided me with a few instructions on maintaining Frances. (Sidenote: This was after she suggested I make an appointment to lie down on someone’s couch to talk about naming and talking to Frances.)
After speaking with my mother, I immediately went online to do additional research on the proper care for Frances. Then, I proceeded to take the steps listed in the articles I read. First, I needed to make sure that Frances had enough sunlight without direct contact with the sun. Next, I needed to make sure I watered Frances at least twice a week. Soonafter (within a day or two), I noticed that Frances had two new sprouts breaking through the soil in the little snowman pot she came in. Of course, I was elated…literally! But the journey did not end there…
I made a trip to the local Home Depot and bought a new pot, some fertilizer, potting soil, and a her own personal spray bottle (she’s a little spoiled). When I returned home, I conducted my very first transplant successfully and returned Frances to her spot on the window sill for post-op and recovery. Because I check on Frances everyday, I was able to quickly notice that she began to produce more sprouts and flourish. However, it did not resonate with me until this morning as I was opening up the blinds…
There is always a simple, little message from our Father and Creator in almost every thing we do. The object lesson for me today: each of us can grow, and not just grow, but thrive if we receive the proper care within the right environment! As the children of God, we all have differing needs that contribute to our overall development and maturation. So as we come to Him through Christ and we align ourselves with Him, He places us within the right environment with the right people that contribute to our growth. As we remain within the right environment with the right people, we begin to thrive and flourish…much like Frances.
Conversely, if we stay in an environment for too long or end up in the wrong environment with little or no care, we automatically fall into survival mode. This is not what God has in mind for any of us, so He launches a rescue mission to remove us from the toxic environment. He transplants us from the toxic environment and places us in a place of recovery wherein He restores us to good health.
When we are in the right environment (church), we receive the love, light, and water we need to reach our potential. Then, as we continue to grow, God places us in a larger space to continue to thrive. If we commit our growth to God, He will ensure that we become connected with those who have no other motive than to help us thrive, not just survive.
So the moral of the story is this…We all need a little love (God), a little light (Jesus), a little water (Holy Spirit) and the right environment (church) in order to thrive!
Sean Mungin, author of “The Thorn In The Flesh”
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