When I first got the Creative Retreat “Flourish” Kit for May, I was wide-eyed. The florals were gorgeous, the colors were beautiful and I could not wait to artistically dive into the devotional. Then I read the content. And I set it down for a couple of days while pondering the questions and talking to God about what was about to take place.
This month’s kit is about the parable of the sower in Matthew 13 and the devotional asks us, as the scripture does, to examine the soil quality of our heart. Like most of you, I’m sure, I don’t like doing self-examination. Yes, I know it’s necessary and it’s often how the Lord speaks to us, but I don’t like it. It’s uncomfortable and honestly, I like thinking that I’m doing a pretty good job in my Christian walk.
But the longer that I thought about this devotion, the question that kept coming to my mind is WHY would God be concerned about our heart’s soil quality and WHY would he want us to “flourish into oaks of righteousness” as Isaiah 61:3 says? And over and over and over again, the answer that I heard was: so that we can bring glory to God. That’s it. The sole purpose of our lives is to bring glory to the Father. The way that we live and the way that we run our spiritual race is designed only to glorify God. He has planted us where we are so that we can make His name great. What an awesome privilege and responsibility that is!
I’m reminded of Psalm 1:3 that says, “He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does he prospers.” Dry seasons, empty seasons, flourishing seasons, all of them are meant to point to the Father. So does that mean if your soil is dry and unproductive you aren’t glorifying God? Absolutely not! Some of our greatest growth comes in those dry seasons. Some of our best fruit is produced after the driest days. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it a million more times…it’s all about perspective. So no matter where you are right now in your journey, you are there because that’s where God sees fit to use you the most. You are planted where you are to bring Him glory.
So this month as we examine the soil of our heart, let’s remember two things:
- The reason why we are planted where we are is so that we can glorify God in the midst of it.
- God is the ultimate gardener. He pulls unnecessary weeds and He prunes overgrown or dry branches so that we will yield better fruit. He fertilizes our soil and does everything in His power to make us stronger. So if you feel a little uncomfortable, hang on. God’s not done with you yet!
Have a great weekend, friends!
For this page, I only used the “Flourish” faithfilled digitals in the Creative Retreat shop. I printed each page twice, once on cardstock and once on clear sticker paper. I then grabbed some of my Pitt Big Brush markers and colored in the florals on the alpha set that were printed on the sticker paper (tip: if you color with a permanent ink on sticker paper it won’t smudge!). I then cut out the letters and a few of the floral images that I wanted and adhered them to the page. I finished with a written prayer at the top and a punched tab from the set.