“Search for the Lord and for his strength; continually seek him.”
I have a beautiful big mustard plant, that lives in a huge earthenware pot outside our front door. For those readers who don’t know, this plant is part of the story behind the name of my blog (the story can be found in the main menu of my website.)
Now, as I’ve written before, I’m the opposite of the green fingered gardener. I seem to inadvertently kill every plant I’ve ever tried to grow. The fact that I have managed to grow this lovely thriving plant from a tiny seed is incredible! It has also made me fiercely protective of my mustard plant. So when my uncle, who is an excellent gardener warned me my plant probably wouldn’t survive the first frost of Winter, I was determined to do everything I could to make sure it would survive.
My plan was to lift the heavy pot into our front porch every night to protect the plant from early morning frost and leave it indoors on the days when it snowed.
We had a lot of snow-days this winter, so the mustard plant had to spend a lot of time indoors; it was interesting to see how it responded to my well intended “help.”
After a few days the leaves started to droop significantly, and almost wither. The soil was moist, the room temperature seemed ok, and the plant was near a window, so I couldn’t think what could be wrong.
Then one day I noticed that the plant was leaning to one side at a really strange angle. It suddenly dawned on me – it was straining with all its might towards the window because, even though it was cold outside the sun was shining. “That’s what’s wrong, you need sunlight!” I said to the plant (yes I’m one of those weirdos who talks to plants) I lifted the pot outside to let the plant have a few hours of natural light. Within a couple of hours, the leaves were no longer drooping and looked a brighter green, and the plant had miraculously straightened up. I did the same every day for the rest of the Winter, and do you know what? Not only did my mustard plant survive Winter, it thrived!
Light Equals Thriving
Plants need sunlight to thrive; My plant, bending and leaning towards the window, was just doing what God designed it to – it was seeking the light of the sun.
And so it is with us.
We are designed by God to thrive in the light of His Presence.
We can try walking away from Him; try to fill the hunger in our hearts with other things. We may even be able to kid ourselves for a while that we’re surviving in those less-than-ideal conditions, but the truth is, without Him we cannot thrive. Our spiritual needs can’t be met by any substitute. God is the only one who can provide what our souls need in order to thrive and grow.
God IS Light
“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” Psalm 27:1
“Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.” John 8:12
Actively Seeking God
Like my plant, leaning right over towards the window in it’s longing for the light of the sun, we need to actively, daily, seek God’s face and spend time in His presence.
Yes, His presence is always with us, that’s His promise to us. But we often become distracted by our day to day activities and dramas, and without meaning to, we pull away from God, forget to put our trust in Him, forget to talk to Him about those very things that are distracting us.
Its not that God hides from us. But sometimes, just in the way clouds obscure the sun, our “stuff” can obscure our view of God.
1 Chronicles 16:11 exhorts us to “Search for the Lord and for his strength; continually seek him.”
He’s with you; The lifter of your head. You need only lift your eyes to Him.