Throughout the years of church planting, any conflict crushed me. If my marriage had a rough day, I was done. If someone at the church was hateful, I was discouraged. If I didn't feel good enough, it made me withdrawal. And so on. I longed for things to always be great, when they weren't I was defeated.
Pslam 92:12 But the godly will flourish like palm trees
Do you know anything about a palm tree? First of all, if someone ever asked the question, "What tree would you be?" The last tree I would think to answer is the tree that often gets hit by hurricanes and tsunamis!! Really, just look at my track record. I apparently am not strong enough to withstand some of the storms in my life. Make me a weeping willow or something. But, the more I researched palm trees the more I realized how much I want to be one.
Palm trees are the symbol of victory. Ever wonder how they withstand some of the strongest storms? Palm tree roots grow deep and wide, and have a strong foundation. If you have ever watched a news video during a hurricane in Florida I'm sure you have noticed how palm trees bend completely over. This is because they aren't resisting the storm. Here's the real kicker. They don't resist the storm, because as they bend over their roots are growing deeper and stronger. Sounds like the tree I want to be.
Most of us fear storms. A couple months ago my husband and I were discussing church planting, and he said, "I don't want to mess up again." My response shocked both me and him. I said, "I do. I want to make mistakes, because when I make mistakes I learn from them." Storms don't have to be scary. Just look at Matthew 14:22. After Jesus feeds the five thousand He sends all of His disciples into a storm. He knew it was coming.
Sometimes the storms in our lives aren't actually what we perceive them to be. The storms are teaching us, growing us, and flourishing us to be stronger. Take it from me, cowering down in fear when marriage gets rough. Running the other way when conflict comes. Wanting to quit the call as pastor's wife when church doesn't look like I expect or think it should. My reactions in resisting the storms aren't flourishing me, they are hindering me. We need to flourish like palm trees, and welcome the storm with thankfulness, because through it our roots are being made stronger.
Flourish Where You Are
WE FLOURISH LIKE FLOWERS OF THE FIELD