During the last part of April, John and I spent some time with family members in the California sunshine. We brought back many good memories and photos. The above photo is one of many that I took during an evening walk through the Sacramento Capital Rose Garden. The roses were in full bloom. I wish I could have included the fragrance in my photo.
According to rose growers, in order to thrive roses need lots of sunshine, at least six hours a day. If I were a rose, I would not do very well during April in the north country! Thankfully, even in cloudy, rainy, and windy days, I can thrive. How? By replenishing my inner self, my spirit, in the overflowing warmth of Jesus’ love.
That’s what I was reminded of when I opened my Bible this morning and read these words of Jesus: “I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love.10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. 11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!” (John 15:9-11 NLT).
How is your spirit, today? Thriving or wilting? Full of joy or weighed down with the cares of the day? l hope that you will spend some time soaking up Jesus’ love. Then, no matter what your circumstances, you will thrive like a rose.
Because my spirit is alive
In the midst of pain, I can thrive.
Thriving is more than surviving;
It’s resting instead of striving.
Resting in the fact I am loved;
Greatly loved by the Father above,
Father of Lights, giver of life,
Who protects my soul day and night
From the Evil One’s devices.
I have learned God’s ways are wisest,
Though they include some suffering.
Despite the suffering, I can sing.
Because I see the joy ahead
And by the Spirit, I am led
Into places that I’d never go.
It’s in those places that I grow
Stronger, braver, wiser, kinder.
My lack serves as a reminder
That I have something more to learn;
So, with humility, not scorn
I’ll receive a kind correction.
And if it’s not gently given
Be willing, still, to learn a lesson–
Make a needed thought-revision,
With gratitude, not resentment.
That’s the pathway to contentment.
If I do these things, I’ll thrive
My spirit will be kept alive.
5/3/2018 Jane Ault