Wednesday, April 13, 2011

In bloom

Here in Kansas City, spring has arrived. It's such a fun time of year, watching trees flower and seeing shoots of forgotten plants emerge from the soil. While our warm days are starting to outnumber our cold days, it can still get pretty cold at night, and two weeks ago - just as the buds on many shrubs had grown brave and opened up - it snowed.

I'm not a big gardener, so it doesn't freak me out the way it does others, but many in our area were all jittery as they eyed the snow-covered flowers. The weather alerts all talked about bringing delicate plants inside, or covering up those you couldn't.

The spring - the wonderful time of change and growth - is a vulnerable time for plants. And it's a vulnerable time for us too.

In Beth Moore's Esther study, she talks about the Amalekites and their attack of the Israelites. (From Deuteronomy 25)

Remember what the Amalekites did to you along the way when you came out of Egypt. 18 When you were weary and worn out, they met you on your journey and attacked all who were lagging behind; they had no fear of God.

When God is bringing us into a new season of life, it's easy to grow "weary and worn out," making us vulnerable to attacks. I think the best way to prevent this is to stay in community. Notice in verse 18 where it says the Amalekites "attacked all who were lagging behind." The people who'd been separated from the group.

I have a tendency to shy away from people when I'm going through some personal junk. I might says it's because I don't want to burden people with my problems, but the truth is it's because I don't want people knowing I have them. When I cut myself off like that, it only causes problems. Those voices that whisper things like, "You're not good enough," or "What makes you think you're special?" grow louder and louder.

But when I share my life - the good, the ugly - with people who love me and love the Lord, they can speak truth into my life. They strengthen me, and God uses them to bring me into maturity. To bring me into full bloom.

Stephanie Morrill is a twenty-something living in Overland Park, Kansas with her husband and two kids. Her only talents are reading, writing, and drinking coffee, so career options were somewhat limited. Fortunately, she discovered a passion for young adult novels a few years ago and has been writing them ever since. Stephanie is the author of The Reinvention of Skylar Hoyt series and is currently working on other young adult projects. She enjoys encouraging and teaching teen writers and does so on her blog To connect with Stephanie and read samples of her books, check out


Julie Garmon said...

I totally relate, Stephanie. I do the exact same thing when going through hard stuff. Loved this post!! And if you took this picture, you're a great photographer.

Stephanie Morrill said...

My husband took these, actually. He's very talented :)

Tay said...

Wow! This is so great! This is perfect timing for me, as God is teaching me to start sharing more of my "feelings" with my friends and other believers. I love the verse you used. Thank you Stephanie!

Julie Garmon said...

For sure!

Stephanie Morrill said...

Tay, that takes courage for sure! Good for you :)

sarah said...

I know what you mean when you say that you don't want to share your feelings with someone else and make them feel bad for you. I have leukemia and a rare disease, and I have only told one of my friends, and she helps me feel like the 8-10 months that I have to live will go on forever, and I hope they never end because I don't want to die before I get to high school. I'm a 7th grader for 19 more days!!!! The only good thing is that I'm not losing any hair!!!

Stephanie Morrill said...

Sarah, WOW. I'm so proud of you for counting your blessings. What a strong girl you are.

sarah said...

Stephanie, that would mean so much more to me if it were true. I'm not strong in any way. Any time anyone asks how i am, i run to the bathroom and cry. anytime anyone asks me about God, I walk away, or ignore them. Anytime anyone asks me about anything, I either start crying, or ignore them. I'm NOT strong I'm weak. Sometimes i wonder if it would be better to die now rather than wait for 8-10 more months of ignoring everyone.

Stephanie Morrill said...

Sarah, is there a reason you're not telling people about your disease? I've never been in your situation, so I can't even begin to imagine what a challenge it would be, but I'm curious about why you aren't telling people.