“Remain in me, and I in you.”

John 15:4 (CSB)

Stirrings Of My Heart

Dearest Reader,

Can I share a story with you? I’ve been following this story for months. It’s as if I’ve pulled the first loose thread on a knitting project. I watch as it unravels in beautiful ways, tugging deeper on the garden of my heart.

My story begins here:

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” John 1:1 (CSB) 

“Oh God, I am furrowed like the field
Torn open like the dirt
And I know that to be healed
That I must be broken first
I am aching for the yield
That You will harvest from this hurt

Abide in me
Let these branches bear You fruit
Abide in me, Lord
As I abide in You”

 Andrew Peterson – The Sower’s Song 

I sat at the edge of a blueberry orchard, rows and rows of bushes heavy with fruit. Dew falls on my feet, as I watch my Sweet Man drop plump blueberries in his bucket. Andrew Peterson crooning words into my ears.

Christy Knockels says these are the first small stirrings one needs to pay attention to. I’ve been paying attention and listening to the stirrings.

There was the barren fig tree Jesus cursed in Matthew 21:18-22 (CSB).

The Parable of the Barren Fig Tree in Luke 13:6-8 (CSB).

As I’m contemplating my heart furrowed open as the field, and where it needs work, I glance up. Front and center on the bulletin board there’s a quote from One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp.

“Change takes real intentionality like a woman bent over her garden beds every day with a spade and the determined will to grow up something good to strengthen the heart.”

Ann Voskamp – One Thousand Gifts: Dare to Live Fully Where You Are 

I feel as if there’s a connection, a theme, digging deep into my soul. I don’t want a barren fig tree in the garden of my heart, and, yes, I confess I don’t care to be pruned anymore. Isn’t the wilderness enough? Isn’t every kind of life change imaginable enough? I’ve shed tears, I’ve done the work of walking through the valley, crossing the mountaintop. I’ve found and seen a faithful God I so badly want for you to find in your wilderness. I am determined to grow something good in this place. But, the pruning, not so much.

We are a work in progress. The pruning is never finished. To bear fruit, it’s as Ann says, I must be a woman bent over the garden of my heart, spade in hand doing the hard work of pruning. Tending the garden, the soil of my heart.

At the end of the day, it’s what grows and transforms us.

I know there’s more to this story, the stirrings in my heart. I feel it in my bones. It’s a thread I’m hanging on to until I know the rest. When I do, I’ll be sure and let you know.

Until then, there’s this:

Whoever tends a fig tree will eat its fruit, and whoever looks after his master will be honored. Proverbs 27: 18 (CSB)

Remaining in Him is the first and most important part of this process. Tending the garden of my heart comes next. Abiding brings rest.

Gifts of Grace

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I’m blessed to serve you in this place, to share with you the Gifts of Grace as I journey through the wilderness. I picture you across the table, hands wrapped tightly around your cup, sharing life, and laughter, and tears. As I share with you, my own daily struggles, I long to hear what yours may be. Sharing the realness of life. You can do that by commenting below or reaching out to me here.

In case you missed this post:

Accept The Season We Are In By Seeking God In The Present

Leaning On The One I Love

Coming in October my Write Thirty-One Days series, 31 Mornings in The Word! Be on the lookout!