Through the natural ebb and flow of life, there are bound to be days of light and glorious abundance, where life seems peaceful and our vision clear. And then there are the days that seem dark, cold, and rather gloomy; days where it is difficult to find your vision into the very next minute.
Quite ashamedly, I admit that it took me almost 40 years of life to understand that the dark days were blessed days- just as blessed, if not more so than the good days. It took me nearly 40 years to dispel the myth in my mind that the dark are dreary days were NOT a result of my failures and/or shortcomings. Rather then an indication of of my inadequacies in this life or weaknesses in an earlier life, the dark days are indication that my creator trusts me enough to encourage new growth; to be cut down, nourished, and to reach for a more full and glorious version of me!
A story is told of a Master gardener who walks through his fields and finds an overgrown currant bush. Though the bush stands tall and has many branches, its shape is wild and its branches unproductive. Knowing the full potential of the currant bush, the gardener starts trimming and pruning until the once tall bush is cut down in size, shape,and perceived maturity. (See short video here)
I have seen this many times in my own gardening of rose bushes and perennial gardens. It is a painful and prayerful task to trust that the cuts made in the pruning process will result in a more lively and healthy plant as the season progresses.
But trust, a gardener must. The gardener trusts that he knows how much pruning the plant can handle, he trusts that he knows that sweet spot that will allow the plant to reach deep within for its own strength to grow and multiply in both size and shape. The gardener must have a relationship with the plant and know both its needs and its limits.
The re-growth of a pruned bush will take time, but I assure you as I remind myself on the daily, that the time this process takes is a time of much activity and immeasurable progress. The pruning process leaves a plant anything but barren, though barren and nearly destroyed is what is often immediately visible to the passerby. The growth is occurring deep within the plant, at its very core, and will result in something more beautiful and abundant than could previously be envisioned.
My prayers this morning, and many mornings before, were for childlike trust in the process of life’s pruning and to TRUST the vision of MY Master Gardener. I know He knows what He is doing, and I know I am more than what I can see today.
I pray each day for patience to enjoy the nourishment that comes my way, to accept the simple watering, fertilizers, and the warmth of the suns rays.
I pray each day for courage look to the light, rather than to focus on the darkness.
I pray for wisdom, not only to look to the light, but to bask in the warmth of the sun rays.
We must trust the process rather than fear the sharp edges of the pruning shears. We must let go of the old and worn branches that have long been barren and make room for the soon to be young and supple branches, ripe with fruit and flower.