We all have words that we live by right? Words that we use to remind us of our identity. Words that push us to keep going. Words that inspire us to acts of love or courage. Words that our momma told us growing up that we can never quite shake from our vocabulary. Words of wisdom a mentor or teacher told us that we hold onto. Words. What are yours?

Bloom. In high school, I remember seeing a poster with the words "Bloom Where You Are Planted", and I fell in love. I know it sounds a little silly, but the metaphor was so beautiful to me. I thought, “That’s going to be my life phrase right there!” The idea that we are all planted by our Father the great gardener just waiting to bloom into the beautiful flowers he has created each of us to be left me in amazement. So it stuck with me. Now, the person who wrote that quote might not have even been thinking that when they said it, but that is what comes to mind when I hear it.

But stretching ourselves thin to do as many good things as we can try to do makes us unable to go deep.

So, I went on with life using that as my motto. Yet, I think I may have abused it a little bit and taken it as ‘get involved in as much as possible.’ Exhibit A: my college years. I just didn’t like to say no to anything. I wanted to be as involved as I could. If it was to help other people, I was in. If it was fun, I was in. If it was a small group, I was in. If it was yet another small group, I was in. I was “coming alive where I was planted” or so I thought. I eventually realized, well, God opened my eyes to see that just because something is a good thing, doesn’t mean it’s what God wants me to do right now. There are tons of good things we can do. So many that it may seem overwhelming and never-ending. But stretching ourselves thin to do as many good things as we can try to do makes us unable to go deep.

Alas, I started to practice the habit of saying no. Let me tell you, it was hard. I would feel like I was going to miss out on something if I wasn’t there doing whatever it was someone asked me to do, but God, oh how gracious he is, always would show up in those moments where instead of doing something I decided to say no. 

Fast forward to this last year and that phrase “Bloom Where You’re Planted” has been on the forefront of my mind more than ever. A couple years ago I decided to stay in Lansing instead of leaving to find “better” or more appealing offers. God was pulling my heart here. So I have been saying “I’m going to bloom where I’m planted, in Lansing.” The funny thing is, my mind’s idea of what blooming looks like and God’s idea are far different. Just recently he spoke to me something that was so powerful, and I believe it can be to many others. He said, “I called you to bloom, not just bud.”

He said, “I called you to bloom, not just bud.”

Isn’t that how were are sometimes? We think we are at our fullest potential in a particular area, yet God has so much more in mind for us. He says you have only just begun to bud. It will take time, but it will be so worth it! You are going to be a beautiful flower. There is still more in you.

What area in your life have you stopped moving forward in because you thought you got as far as you could go or thought you had bloomed and so you moved on? Maybe you’ve only just begun to bud, and God is waiting to bring out even more gold. I know I sure am glad for those who have dug out the gold in me when I didn’t even see it. God created you for greatness, so why stop at good?

Hopefully, next time you hear “Bloom where you are planted” you’ll remember that you weren’t called to just bud but to BLOOM!

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