the metaphorical preschool plant.

I have never been much of a gardener.

Years ago, Jake hand delivered a peace lily to me at school and I promptly killed the plant which was marketed as “easy to grow.”

(Also, it’s worth noting that I didn’t even know it was called a peace lily until about 5 minutes ago when I Googled “plant with white flower and spiky center.”)

My green thumb doesn’t have a great track record, really.

About a month ago, I got to spend a Wednesday morning with Lily at her preschool. We did all kinds of crafts, and, at one of the stations, we were provided dirt and flower seeds. Together, Lily and I filled her hand-painted pot with soil, dumped in an entire packet of flower seeds (because, you know, my green thumb forgot you really only need one or two), and sprinkled them with water.

And then we brought it home and waited for it to grow.

Now, I’ve grown things before, but most of the time, I buy them pre-grown. My tomato plant last year came with teeny green tomato buds all over it. The petunias in my front yard? They were already blooming when I thrust their roots into the ground.

This little preschool plant was the first thing I can remember growing from a seed.

And grow it did.

And then do you know what happened? It outgrew its container. The roots needed to be able to dig down deeper, so I had to transplant it.

I had to move it entirely, so that it could continue to grow and flourish.IMG_0224.JPGWe moved to Cleveland almost exactly 2 years ago.

If I close my eyes, I can still palpably remember the anxiety I felt while watching Jake haul the contents of our well-loved duplex to his hand-built trailer.

Everything was uprooting around me.

And then a few days later, it was all transplanted here.

As I helped Lily take our literal plant out of its tiny pot and place it into its new home, I was filled with an immediate sense of overwhelming gratefulness. The metaphor is not lost on me.

I know that God moved us here, so that we could continue to grow and flourish in new ways.

He took our roots and thrust them into the ground here, and, while very few things about this move have been easy, I can’t not see how this change has trellised our family to the important and lasting.

(Raise your hand if you’re impressed that I know what a trellis is.)

I never want to reach the bottom of the pot.

I don’t want to run out of room to grow.

I want my roots to run deep but also stay ready to be uprooted.

Our plant now sits on the front porch, growing steadily in its new space.

And, as I look at it each day, it serves as a reminder: I may not be a very good gardener, but I serve a God who is. And if I abide in Him, He will prune every branch that bears fruit, so that it will bear even more.

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