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Saturday, February 23, 2019

Bloom Where You're Planted Even If The Land is Parched

Bloom Where You're Planted. ~Mary Engelbreit

In Jeremiah 29 the prophet sent a letter to the exiles in Babylon ... Babylon! This city does not have a good report with our Lord. However, Jeremiah tells them to ... well, bloom where you're planted. Wait on the Lord (which was about 70 years for them) till he brings you out of Babylon, out of exile, and back home. 

In the meantime they are told, in verses 5, 6, and 7, to "Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce. Marry and have sons and daughters; find wives for your sons and give your daughters in marriage, so that they too may have sons and daughters. Increase in number there; do not decrease. Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper."

Sometimes, when I birth a heart of prickly pears, I start feeling sorry for myself. After all, someone hit the pause button on my blossoming dreams. I'm having to give up my life to take care of someone else's life, or two someones. I've somehow managed to land in the middle of the dry and desolate desert with no oasis in sight.

But not true, far from it. God has me exactly where I need to be. He's got you there, too.

We must change our point of view from a me-view to a God-view. Do we trust our heavenly Father to take care of us, manage and direct our lives, make it purposeful, and fill it with a hope and a future? He promises that He will never leave or forsake you. He has a plan, there's always a plan. And it's a grand plan. 

The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail. ~Isaiah 58:11 (NIV)

If you feel like you've been exiled to the desert ... awesome! He's about to strengthen your frame. He's about to turn you into a well-watered garden. Think of jasmine wafting through the air; orange blossoms blowing in the wind; a sea of green grass and flower beds. How 'bout cucumbers, tomatoes, fruit trees, and rows of strawberries. Don't forget the shade from your apple and peach trees. What's your oasis look like? He will lead you there. Not one of His promises will fail you. But we must get into His Word, eat it up like honey, or how will we know His promises?

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. ~Matthew 6:33

Are we ready to bloom where God has planted us, giving up our dreams for a God-sized dream and future? Hard to grasp? Look for the everyday miracles. God is in the details. Look for the lessons He has carefully planted for our growth. Find the hidden treasures. You'll find them in His Word. 

Discipline yourself to come to Him first with everything and anything. You'll be surprised, or maybe not, how easy it will become to hear His still small voice (especially in the morning) if you get to know Him better each day. You are His concern, you are His priority.

Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows. ~Matthew 10:29-31

In this video my friend, author Sharon Pearson--a fellow caregiver--is having A Conversation with God. Take a few minutes and dig into this.

A Caregiver's Prayer

Lord, help me to keep my eyes on you. I am ready to bloom where you've planted me. Remind me that your plans are better, your ways are perfect. May I not worry about tomorrow, but live one day at a time for you. Thank you for a future filled with hope and purpose.  

Beloved Caregiver

Living Waters I have sent
Among the dry the dew descents
The desert willow weeps in bloom
It stands alone in slight askew

Your path will light beneath the stars
When evening primrose blooms so sparse
What daylight hides the night springs forth
One life to live forevermore

Within this light I planted you
Where moonbeams pierce the darkness through
You bloom into the morning fair
A desert jewel refreshed and rare

(Copyright 2019 by Deborah L. Alten)

Scriptures for the Caregiver

by Kelley from Live, Laugh, Rowe.

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