The flowers in my backyard have been such a blessing to me this year. The deer have left the lilies alone, and the variety of plants and colors have been stunning. You just can’t beat God’s creation. There’s seldom a time that God doesn’t have some kind of a lesson or spiritual blessing in it all.
Let’s think of our (your) church as a garden of flowers. Try to imagine what kind of “flower” you are in your church. Are you fast or slow growing, quick to bloom, tall in height, or more like a ground covering? Do you need tender loving care or are you hardy and strong and can withstand even those nasty dry days?
To have a beautiful garden, it takes a variety of plants; all growing different from another; all needing different attention to help it mature and blossom. It takes work; it takes patience; not only for a physical garden, but for “our spiritual church garden.” A church consists of a variety of peoples, but there are certain things we all need individually just as a physical garden needs. It takes water and nourishment to help flowers grow. Don’t we need the same? Eph. 5:26 says:
“Christ loved the church, and gave himself for it; That He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word.” The word is our water –
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly…” Col. 3:16a
II Pet. 3:11 admonishes us to, “Grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.” We do that by being in the Word of God daily.
Of course we can’t forget the weeds – some are prickly, some grow pretty deep in the soil and are hard to remove. Unlike physical weeds, God will quickly remove (forgive) our “weeds” (our sins) if we ask Him, and He’ll help us not to let them grow back.
Lastly, why haven’t the deer come and eaten my lilies this year? It’s because I placed several small canisters of “Deer Off” in front of the row of flowers. I considered the deer my enemies. We also have an enemy who wants to destroy us, to prevent us from growing, to prevent us from blooming. Obviously this is Satan. We know we have the “armor of God” to protect us. But we also need to actively do this:
“Submit yourself therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.” James 4:7,8
Be a “beautiful flower” so when we are all together people will say, “My, what a “beautiful garden” this is. I want to be a part of it”