I don’t have a green thumb. In fact, I have tried to keep three different orchid plants alive with no success. The instructions said I simply had to add three ice cubes to the pot, once a week, and my plant would flourish. That sounded easy enough, so I thought. After the third plant died, I finally gave in and bought an artificial one. Surprisingly, for the past several years, I have generated some pretty spectacular roses during the summertime. With very little effort on my part, my plants have produced some beautiful blooms. That is, until this year. You see, Connecticut had an abundance of caterpillars this spring, and they ate all the leaves off my rose bushes. All that remained were wiry branches without a bit of green or a rosebud in sight. I kept pruning them, but nothing happened. I had no idea how to restore these plants.
After some “rose consultation,” I learned that the roses simply needed fertilizer. Apparently, my bushes were starving for nourishment. Who knew roses needed to be fed? Well, probably anyone with a green thumb. But, not me.
I may not have a green thumb, but I can clearly recognize when a plant is dying. At the same time, it is obvious when a Christian life is suffering too. In some ways, we are very much like those rose bushes. We often go through periods without any growth in our lives. Our branches are bare, and we feel like we are wilting away. We are hungry for the things of God, but we’ve allowed the busyness of life to rob us of our growth.
If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
So what is the solution? For the roses, a trip to Home Depot did the job. For Christians, it’s a little more involved. We need to be constantly filling ourselves with the Holy Spirit through dedicated prayer time. We need to open up our Bibles and meditate on the Word of God every day. And, we need to make sure we are being fed in church, even during these summer months. I know the summer vacation season is busy, but we can never take a vacation from God.
Ladies, some of you are starving and you don’t even recognize it. You’ve allowed the busyness of life to rob you of times of spiritual nourishment. Pay attention to the warning signs in your life. Time in the Word and prayer are the best fertilizer you can apply. Don’t let another day pass. It is time to stop and feed the roses.
That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither--whatever they do prospers.