Monday, April 9, 2012

Root Bound

I’ve been helping my friend with a landscaping project this week. This has been a bit more involved than just putting in a few flowers here and there around the yard. We actually removed four large shrubs of unknown variety and replaced them with azaleas, gardenia and some perennial flowers. We also created two new flower beds as well as planted her herb garden. So we’ve been busy. 

Of course, all of this activity necessitated a few trips to the local garden center, to pick out plants. We took our time, carefully choosing the healthiest looking  plants with just the right color. After all, we wanted the newly landscaped yard to look amazing. Once our choices were made we could hardly wait to get the plants home and put into the ground.
I won’t go into detail about preparing the flowerbeds at this time but suffice it to say that my friend’s yard is a potter’s dream. Once the holes were dug we began to carefully slide the precious plants out of their plastic pots. And that’s when we saw the roots. Some of the roots were loose and easily arranged in the hole. These plants took right off and began growing, with no visible sign of distress.
But other plant’s roots were tightly twisted in upon themselves and impossibly bound in a knot that refused to come loose. Even though we wanted to disturb the roots as little as possible, we had to pull these roots apart in order to give the plants a chance to live. This made me think.
God takes His time carefully choosing us for His purposes. He lovingly prepares a place for us to serve Him. I imagine the joy it gives Him thinking of how beautiful our lives will be once He places us in the spot He has chosen for us. Some people slip right into the “ground” with no problem and thrive.
Others however only look good on the surface. But when God tries to move them to the place He wants them to be, He finds that they cling so stubbornly to the way things have always been that He has to forcibly pry them out of their pew. Then instead of thriving they hang their heads, complain and refuse to grow. Some even shrivel up and die. 
I don’t want to be like that. I want to be like the mint we pulled up and threw on the compost heap…it’s already starting to grow a new patch.