Time for a transplant?
Friday when I stepped into the hall, I saw a student carrying a gallon pot with an aloe plant. Her plant was so large and healthy that I commented and told her of my pint sized aloe which had gotten taller but was twisting. She advised me to get a larger pot for a plant will grow to the size of the container and no more. She warned me to watch for this sign: when an aloe plant has reached its max size for the pot it will drop seeds and begin a new one. I already have a new plant which is about an inch tall. Sounds like I’ve waited almost too long to transplant!
As I stood at the sink a few moments ago, my eye was caught by my aloe and the student’s advice came to mind. As I thought of her words, the Spirit opened my eyes to a great spiritual truth. We too grow to the size of our container. God places us in situations, places, and relationships for our good and to help others. God lets us grow in a pot until we are ready to be transferred up to a larger one. Transplanting my aloe will likely be traumatic to the plant at first the time has come. I wonder… when God moves us up to a bigger pot, a larger sphere of influence, a new job, a place of greater potential for spiritual growth, do we go willingly? Reluctantly? Does he have to drag us kicking and screaming? (I don’t believe he will drag us but he has other ways of helping us change directions… just ask Jonah!)
If I were to describe my journey right now in terms of pots, I would say I am in the transfer stage. God is using new challenges to push me out of the old pot in order to transplant me into a new pot where the potential to grow is greater. When I step back and look at where I’m at and what God has brought my way, I get a glimpse of how he wants me to grow. Yet up close to the journey, I sometimes feel the trauma of the transplant. Lord, I feel so tiny in this new pot! I need you now more than ever… which I guess is really the point. In this plant analogy, I thirst for your water! I need the light of your face shining on me! I need the right nutrients in the soil so cultivate me with the Word. I truly don’t know what you see in me that leads you to give me a bigger pot… wait, yes I do- you see Jesus in me- must… for I am nothing on my own!
Lord, use me. Fill me. Guide me. Prune me (ouch!). Just in the few months I’ve faced these new challenges in the journey, I can see the new growth as I’m learning to depend on you like never before! Continue to help me! Send the sunshine & yes, even the rain as needed, that I may grow more in you today. Amen!