Weeds and flowers

We’ve all heard that phrase “grow where you’re planted”. It’s a nice thought, right? You’ve been placed in this “soil”, so grow while you’re in it.

But recently, looking at a little note at my friend Christy’s desk, God gave me a new perspective on that. The note was a simple, handwritten note that said “Bloom where you’re planted” with a little flower drawn on. Bloom. Not grow.

Is there a difference?

Here’s the thing. A weed grows where it’s planted. It grows, and chokes out the life of everything around it. It grows taller and taller and spreads itself all around until it can choke out the life of a once beautiful garden.

A flower…well, a flower grows where it’s planted. But then it blooms.  It blooms into the beautiful, colorful flower that God designed it to be. It’s not only beautiful to look at, but it gives life to things around it. Other things in its garden depend on it for its life giving pollen.

A weed is never picked and given as a token of affection or gathered and placed in a bouquet. A weed is never simply cut with the hope that it grows back again next season. A weed can only be removed by digging up it’s roots and pulling every part of it, then throwing it away.

A flower though, is picked by a small child as often a first gift he gives his mother. A flower is given as a token of affection and love. Flowers are gathered and placed as centerpieces in our homes or placed in bouquets for our most special occasions. A flower, once cut, can leave its roots. Because those roots will again grow and bloom into life. Beautiful, flourishing life.

Right now, right where you are, are you living as a weed or as a flower? Wherever you are, God has placed you there for a reason.  And probably even only for a season. Maybe it’s a hard place. Maybe it’s an unwanted place. Maybe it’s an isolated place. Maybe it’s a place of hurt, confusion, loss, frustration, anger. But it’s where you are.

So are you choosing to live there as a weed? Are you allowing bitterness, resentment, anger, negativity be the source of your growth? Or are you living there as a flower? Allowing grace and love and mercy and peace and God’s promises be the source of your growth?

Whether you’ve made the choice to be a weed or a flower, you’re growing. But one grows and brings death, choking out the life around it. The other grows and blooms and brings life and joy to everything around it.

It’s a choice. Sometimes a daily choice. So today, choose. Choose to bloom as the beautiful flower God made you to be.

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