I have been in the studio this week recording the audio files for my new book, “Vibrant: Developing a Deep and Abiding Joy for All Seasons”.
“Vibrant” will release on November 3 – but I thought that I would give you just a taste of what is in this new book that I was so honored to write.
So read on … and decide today that no matter what happens to you in your life that you will embrace a life of unmatched vibrancy!
Have you ever had a load of manure dumped on you? I have had it happen to me many times and it is disgusting!
Now, I am not talking about actual manure, of course, but times in my life when people gossiped about me, when finances failed me, and when my health was weakened. I have felt attacked by the sewage of others when I have been rejected or when my children have been mistreated.
Initially, a heap of manure dumped upon someone’s life is putrid and vile.
However, the long-term experience of being covered in circumstantial manure is only offensive momentarily because as time does its work in the makeup of the manure, a miracle happens.
There are times in all of our lives when the hard stuff prepares us for the great stuff.
There are seasons when the situation in life that stinks the most is often what will cause the most beautiful growth.
It is vital to remember that it is possible to grow through what you go through.
I hope that you have come to realize that the lessons one learns from gardening can be easily applied to life.
One of these lessons is that the hardest, the most difficult, and the ugliest days of life are able to create the desired environment for ravishing growth.
As I look back at my life, I can assure you of the truth of that statement.
I have learned to allow the difficulties in life to act as fertilizer in the garden of my soul.
When life throws something vile and wasteful on me, I simply plant another crop of joy and allow it to thrive!
When disappointment raises an unforgettable odor, I sow a future crop of hope despite the smell.
Just as manure boosts the growth in a garden, it is the difficult people, the rancid events, and the putrid circumstances of life that are able to promote the growth of something splendid in me. I am more loving because of the difficult people, stronger due to rancid events, and lovelier because of putrid circumstances.
What the enemy meant for evil in my life has been miraculously used to make me stunningly vibrant!
It is a well-known fact among horticulturalists that manure or organic matter can actually act as a high-powered growth stimulant in soil.
So it is in the garden of your heart.
When fetid conditions are thrown upon you, the Master Gardener is more than able to bring forth a bumper crop of rapid growth in spite of the odor.
In reality, we should welcome those difficult and unwanted events that will eventually cause exponential growth as we give our lives to the Master.
Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete lacking in nothing. (James 1:2–4)
There are times in life when the darkness surrounds you and the smell reviles you, but at that moment, you must remind yourself that you are not buried—you are planted!
When you are covered by darkness, remind yourself that inside of you lies a seed of hope, peace, and joy.
When life tries to bury you, allow it to be a growing season of your heart.
God does a work in the dark places in life that will not happen anywhere else.
God will release a treasure of His character in you that will define your calling and propel you into greatness.
I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden wealth of secret places, so that you may know that it is I, the Lord, the God of Israel, who calls you by your name. (Isaiah 45:3)
Let hope spring forth from the darkness and joy radiate from the smell. Allow the peace that surpasses all understanding enables you to stand strong when darkness is all that you see.
What was meant to destroy you could, in fact, be your most abundant growing season of all!
This is an updated edition of a post originally published on Carol McCleod