BEST SEASON - BY ZENOVIA FICK
Women of Reverence welcomes Zenovia Fick as a guest blogger.
I’m a lover of Jesus, wife to my best friend Quintin and mother to 3 beautiful girls, Zoe, Xanthe and Zara. I love writing free verse poetry and reading inspirational writing. I’m a High school English teacher by training. I love to swim upstream and challenge the status quo in education. I have a blog that I started to share my personal journey to thrive as an educator but recently I mostly post on the THRIVE Facebook page.
Our slogan is “I teach, I thrive”.
Spring … my favourite time of the year. A universal time of hope and renewed strength, where sunshine melts snow, and winds change to warm and there is that beautiful earthy smell of new growth bursting forth. Spring has so much to teach us about our Christian faith journeys. If I were to take one word to explain spring I would choose the word, “hope”.
Psalm 71 vs 14 -16 from The Voice translation
“But I will keep hope alive and my praise for you will grow exponentially. I will bear witness to your merciful acts, throughout the day, I will speak of all the ways that you deliver, although I admit, I do not know the entirety of them. I will come with stories of your great acts, my Lord the Eternal.”
We all agree, our lives go through seasons. Winter seasons where we feel cold and not much grows, where sometimes hurt causes hardness in our hearts or disappointments keep us down and dreary, where there is not much fruit on the vine and the dream boards hang dusty … hard times, hard places, but today we explore the other side of that place, the other side of winter, the guarantee of a Spring returning with new life, new seeds for dreams, healing salve for our souls, new friendships, re-kindled old ones, forgiveness and freedom and wholeness … hope.
In nature, spring comes. In our lives spring comes. But we can miss it if we are not prepared. Gardeners know that certain things need to be done in order to prepare for the new growth of spring. I found this gardening article and as I skimmed over it, I just felt Holy Spirit saying, allow me to speak into the reader’s hearts … so many of these practical garden things can be applied to hearts and minds.
Here is an overview of the 7 main steps that gardeners take to prepare for spring, in brackets are my Biblical parallels, but allow Holy Spirit to speak uniquely to you:
Get your tool shed in order, oil and sharpen tools, replenish your supplies of fertiliser, stakes for holding up plants etc
(Set up regular times for devotions, personal and corporate prayer, small group connections etc).
Clear out weeds and burn them so they can’t re-seed back into your garden and dead leaves that have not yet broken down into the soil. (Allow the Holy Spirit to help you remove those burdens that you are carrying, confess struggles with a friend so they can pray with you - James 5 vs 16; Acts 3 vs 19).
Prune – especially roses. Cutting off old growth to make space for new. Pruning is like surgery and the re-growth is like healing from deep wounds.(Sometimes we can be so focused on our current growth that we don’t want God to cut back so he can work on fruitfulness in another area, pruning makes space for more of God’s new as we allow Him to take away some of what is familiar and sometimes superfluous, it can be painful and look ruthless, but the future blooms make it worth it).
Prepare your soil – by turning it and loosening it and adding nutrients to it (Check the condition of your heart, has it grown hard, allow your mind to be renewed Romans 12 vs 2; Luke 8 – good seed in good soil).
Set up new planters and garden beds so you have space for the re-growth. (Keep seeking God for more – be prepared, say yes, stretch yourself, practice in private so when opportunity knocks you can say, “here I am Lord, send me”, 2 Peter 1 vs 5 – add to your faith …).
Divide perennials, (plants that keep flowering) – they tend to clump on top of each other so they need to be thinned out. (Get out of your comfort zones, venture into new territory, meet new people, invite new people into your spot).
Apply new mulch – to keep the moisture in the soil, and prevent the weeds from even sprouting. (Surround yourself with godly companions, read your Bible often, be thankful and prayerful).
So as the August winds blow and bring in Spring, allow Holy Spirit to blow freshness and keep your hope alive that God is good, that He has more for you and that times of refreshing are yours for the taking, just get ready.
“August winds blow hope
Like Jasmine scenting the streets
It will be OK.”
Haiku by Dalene Reyburn
“Life bursts forth afresh
God’s mercy is seen anew”
It is time to dream.”
Haiku by me