All of that from an Edible Arrangement? God can!

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Once in a while in life we have moments that speak so much more to us than we could find the words to describe, this was one of those moments for me…

As we closed our bible study in group prayer, I noticed the door slowly opening and two faces looking in. Just as the door gently opened I heard my name called by one of those faces. When your boss man calls your name, your heart takes a moment, and by a moment I mean it stops as if life isn’t depending on it. It had absolutely no reason to be afraid, but being the vital organ it is, it had to show off I suppose.

Just as my Pastor and Administrative Pastor, who also happen to be my bosses, walked in they handed me this wonderful and thoughtful gift. My mind went in a million directions and took me back about five years as I stared at it. God knew exactly why my mind went where it did and it was like at that moment I could hear His whispers louder than anything going on around me, “I told you my love, it was all in my timing. I didn’t lead you wrong.”

The edible arrangement that was placed in my hands and the encouraging words that were spoken to me carried a weight that will last a lifetime. Without giving too much back story, let me share with you the beautiful way that God paints our lives.

About three and half years ago I took a full-time job that I thought for sure God laid out for me. In my mind, His name was written all over it. I felt positive this was what He wanted for me. For two solid days I cried the entire time I was on that job and felt so uneasy and restless. At the end of the second day as I sat in silence, I looked up and said, “God, you placed me here, why don’t I have peace about this? Give me peace.” Just like my moment at bible study that day, His whisper echoed through the halls of the building into the halls of my heart, “No, I didn’t place you here. I allowed you to walk through the door you thought you wanted so you could see this isn’t my plan for you.” It was like time froze and held me captive.

After I went home that night crying hysterically and talking to my husband, I left that job. The very next day as I stood at my dryer folding clothes and talking with God about everything I couldn’t understand and was having difficulty processing, I heard from Him clearly, yet again. He began to tell me exactly what He wanted me to do, and He was calling me into full-time vocational ministry. The picture He gave me then looks different today, but I believe with all that I am that He weaved my life through the different phases that He has only to prepare me for where He has me today. Not many people around me knew that where I am now was my biggest dream, but God did because He planted that dream in me long before it became a reality and it stayed in the secret places between me and Him.

Standing back in the present, God used this “Edible Arrangement” to speak a beautiful reminder to my heart. He reminded me of how far He has brought me and the faithfulness of His hands at work. What came to my mind in an instant was the fruits of the spirit and how He had to arrange them in me.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” {Galatians 5:22-23}

The dream that God had placed in my heart a few years ago wasn’t quite ready to be awakened just yet. The dream weaver knew He had some more weaving to do in my heart, mind, and soul before He would add color to the dream. For the time being it had to remain in black and white until one by one He allowed me to go through many tests and trials that would begin to color each fruit a little more.

Working full-time in ministry isn’t a five-star restaurant experience, its more of a work in the kitchen and serve experience. He knew what would be needed and required of me, what would face me head on, and how I needed to respond to each individual experience, in all areas and aspects of my life. He wasn’t even concerned with packaging yet, only the fruit on the inside. We’re all expected to live in the spirit rather than the flesh, that isn’t a selective expectation based on our occupation. But they can all be the most rewarding experiences when we submit to His hand at work in us so that He can accomplish more through us.

This week marks two years since the day that my Father decided to awaken my dreams with vivid color. I would love to say that I have those fruits of the spirit perfected, but let’s be honest, perfection will never happen here on Earth. He’s still working in me, on me, and through me. However, what I have learned over time isn’t just knowledge, its experience with application and it’s a daily walk with Him. I’ll keep walking, learning, and hopefully look more and more like Him every day.  I’m grateful for His arrangement and for seeing imperfect me as ready to deliver.

Whatever it may be that you feel God is wanting to do in your life, know this, He will complete it. He may say no for a time, He may say wait, and He may say move forward, but whatever He says, I can guarantee you He’s arranging everything in your heart and life just the way it needs to be before He gives the green light of peace to move. There is no doubt in my mind, He knows exactly what He is doing and that never changes. Even through the ups and downs of life, all the side roads, and what we think are detours, it’s the exact path He needs us to take to make us ready for where He’s delivering us.

Lord, thank You for being Sovereign Lord over our lives. Help us to remember that sometimes You will ask us to take a step forward but that doesn’t always mean it’s time to walk the block just yet, but it’s the step in obedience and each one thereafter You are looking for. Thank You for arranging the fruit in our lives and adding such beautiful vivid color to each one through all that You are teaching us.  ~In Jesus Name, Amen.