by Kim Warf
It’s hard to see that Spring has arrived up in the great state of Maine! But, soon the lawns will grow green and the trees will bud and bloom showing forth the evidence of this season of New Beginnings. The life of a Christian is much like this. We pray, believing to see our requests bud and bloom into reality even though many times there is no seen evidence. However, by faith, we must trust that God is working even when everything seems contrary.
A time of protection!
In the realm of nature, one of the most important things for growing occurs in the winter season called vernalization. This is a biological function meant to ensure that plants do not break dormancy and start to grow until winter is over. God has controls in place to hold and keep the plants until they are READY to flower or bear fruit. Amazing—these parallels from nature and what God does with us! These times of waiting God has prepared beforehand for our PROTECTION – when we are in the cold – when it seems like nothing is going on – and we are tired of waiting – when we want it now!
However, these are necessary times of protection in order for us to be able to eventually and healthily bloom. During this cold rest period, (ironically called Chill Hours) the leaf growth on lawns stop but the root system is still growing and forming foods to bolster the spurt of new growth in the spring. Without this rest, the lawns would not survive !! Did you catch that…did you? The root system is still growing even though everything else that you can see on the surface is not! As we cooperate with the Word and Spirit, God is forming our foundation and our character. He forming food/sustenance to enable us in our next season!
A proper root system
It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been a Christian. God is still working things out in us so we may have a proper root system so that Godly character is firmly planted in our hearts. Godly character can be defined as “the ability to discern God’s right way from the wrong, and to voluntarily surrender one’s own will to do what is right in God’s sight and, with the promised supernatural help, to resist the wrong even under pressure and temptation.” A shorter definition is: “Godly character is consistently doing the RIGHT THING at the RIGHT TIME in the RIGHT WAY for the RIGHT REASON.”
Remember as you pray, even if we can’t see anything happening, God is always working behind the scenes in our lives and in our loved ones’ lives. Believe and understand that He is most interested in growing our roots before we see the fruit. Philippians 2:13 says, “for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.”
Kim Warf is Associate Pastor and Women’s Ministry Director at New Beginnings Church in Bangor, Maine. She is on the Board of Directors of Women of the Word and has chaired several WOW conferences in Maine. She and her husband Paul have two daughters and a granddaughter.