Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Spring (as in the season) (11/28/05)
TITLE: Beds of Promise
By Debbie Sickler
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A few years ago when my husband and I bought our house, I saw large empty flowerbeds and my imagination took off. It was mid-September and the days were gloomy and growing colder. I took to the barren soil and planted hundreds of bulbs, which would bloom in the spring. Visions of brightly colored flowers framing my porch on either side, adding just the right amount of curb appeal, filled my mind as my hands worked diligently to fill the soil with promises.
For hours I knelt on my little gardening pad, trowel in one gloved hand, bulb after bulb in the other. Finally, I laid the last bulb to rest for the long winter ahead. Now I too could rest and relax with the knowledge that come spring, I would have a beautiful flowerbed overflowing with life. Butterflies and humming birds would flitter about, going from one bloom to another. Smiling at the image, I headed indoors for some hot chocolate.
Weeks turned into months and the bulbs lay almost forgotten under the frozen ground. Then one day I noticed the chill in the air had not been present for a while. I stepped off my porch and stood in the middle of my yard gazing about. In my flowerbed, I now saw the slightest bits of green just emerging from a long wintry nap.
Every morning when I retrieved my newspaper, my eyes would catch another bud that had snuck up a few more inches, seemingly over night. The blossoms began to fill the void that once loomed in front of my home. My yard was brought to life as the butterflies and hummingbirds were indeed drawn to my vibrant display.
I am thankful for my beautiful flowers, not only for their splash of color and fragrant scent, but also for what they represent. The bulbs were planted long before their blooms were ever to be seen. Beneath the surface, all throughout the long winter, work was being accomplished. Roots were digging down and spreading out. Although this process was hidden from my eyes, it was necessary; I had to trust that something good was coming.
God works similarly in our lives. He plants talents and gifts in all of us, but from our position, we canít always see what is happening beneath the surface. If we have faith, we will see sprouts. After what may seem like a long and unfruitful winter, spring will come and Godís promises will bloom.
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