Blooming where you are planted
Today I am speaking on Blooming where you are planted. Now what does Blooming Where you are planted mean? Well I believe it is knowing that where God has placed you in your church, in your life, in your job, in your family is where he wants you to be.
There were a couple in our church, long before Nathan was born, who were working in the children’s ministry who ended up leaving the church because they wanted to be used. They didn’t see that they were already being used. Their idea of being used was to be seen. They wanted to be up the front, being given the attention, the applause. They didn’t understand that they needed to Bloom Where they Were Planted.
How can you bloom where you are planted in our church?
1. We can seek God, in numerous ways.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
And how do we seek God, well we can –
Matthew 21:22 – If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.
This does not mean like the song says: Oh Lord wont you buy me a Mercedes Benz? It is not if we believe in getting stuff, but if we live as we believe that God is the God of the universe that if we live like we should, how he wants and we walk side by side with him, giving him our lives then ask for something that we know he wants for us we will therefore receive that we ask for.
Cindy Jacobs talks about times with God in her prayer closet where she makes such a deep connection with God he says to her something along the lines of “What do you want, and you can have it?” She has sought out God in prayer and she has received what she has asked for.
Read our Bibles
2 Timothy 3:16-17
16All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
God tells us here that Scripture will help us to be equipped for every good work. Everything that you want to do for God, that is every good work, has its training manual with the covers of your Bible.
Bible Study is helpful not only for that. Think of your Bible like a cookbook. A cookbook is a training manual for a cook or chef. You may be able to stumble through recipes without one and make something tasty, but you won’t be able to do so all the time. Also you can often only stumble through a recipe when you know how certain ingredients work together so you needed to have studied a cookbook in the past and used what you have learnt from that before. Our Bibles are the same. We cannot get through life without our Bibles. We need them in our lives to be like the rudder of a ship, guiding us along leading us in the right direction.
Another way that we can learn to bloom where we are planted is to seek help from others.
2. Ask someone.
(At this point ask Julie if I could head the departments of Prophecy and Intercession and Healing Ministry and when she says no ask why.)
Other people are often better at seeing where we would be good and alternatively where we would not be good. If you don’t agree with what they say, go back to the top and pray, seek God and read your Scriptures to help either realise that they were wrong in some way or that you were wrong.
Sometimes we also need to realise that we may be right for something but not just yet. There is timing in everything that God does and we cannot rush these things. Look at Abraham and Haggai. Abraham rushed a child and bore Ishmael with Sarah’s slave Haggai when the promised child was with Sarah: Isaac.
So how do we apply these things to ourselves?
One of the things I have learned about life is that you should not make your plans “too definite.”
When we set off to go to university or we begin our career, we may think we have an idea of all the details that will follow, we in actuality we really have no clue. Being uncertain is a frightening thing and for this reason, we like to stay where it is safe. The Israelites wanted to go back home where it was safe and we want to be in familiar places where we are safe.
In the play “You’re a Good man Charlie Brown” Snoopy has several random lines throughout. At one point Snoopy says, “Sometimes I think I’ll just pull up stakes and move out of here. Broaden my horizons, meet new people. But something binds me to this spot, that old supper dish.” Many good Christian people have missed out on what God could have done because they have been too scared to be uncomfortable. In Jeremiah 29:4-9 we see him telling Israel that they will be gone for some time so they should stop thinking about home and move on.
4 This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says to all those I carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon:
5 “Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce.
6 Marry and have sons and daughters; find wives for your sons and give your daughters in marriage, so that they too may have sons and daughters. Increase in number there; do not decrease.
7 Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the LORD for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.”
8 Yes, this is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: “Do not let the prophets and diviners among you deceive you. Do not listen to the dreams you encourage them to have.
9 They are prophesying lies to you in my name. I have not sent them,” declares the LORD.
10 This is what the LORD says: “When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfil my gracious promise to bring you back to this place.
Jeremiah is telling his audience that even though they are going to be in exile for a long while, they can still trust God because God has plans to prosper them and to give them hope and a future. Although things seem grim now and it appears that all has been lost with the destruction of the temple and their wonderful city, God still has plans for them. This is great news!
Jeremiah adds that then they will be able to call on God and he will listen, they will be able to seek him and they will find him. This is especially important because the place in Jerusalem designated for calling on God and praying was the temple. Now the temple is gone, but God can still be found. As Robert Davidson nicely puts it in his commentary in the Daily Study Bible Series,
He (Jeremiah) challenges them to see that, having lost Jerusalem, the Temple, their homeland, everything that they had previously considered essential to their faith, they had in fact lost nothing. True faith consists in praying to a God who hears, in seeking “with all your heart” and finding; and that can be done as surely by the waters of Babylon as in the temple in Jerusalem.
The truth is that God does not care whether you live in Bacchus Marsh or Toorak, Geelong or Crown Towers. God wants you to seek him no matter where you go. God is bigger than any city, any where. God can even speak to you in a different church! HE can even speak to you in a different denomination or a different post code. All he asks of us that no matter where we are transplanted to or for how long, we seek after him with our hearts.
So when we find that where we are is where He wants us to be how to we keep healthy. To bloom fully as God’s children and to stay healthy we must be continually watered with God’s word and love, and nurtured in the faith. It is not enough to pray and seek God and find out where he wants us to be and then to stop doing what we were doing when we were seeking God. We must continually do this. Like a plant won’t survive by being watered once, neither can we. We must also watch out that we don’t become ‘root bound so to speak’ where the roots of a plant have taken up all the area of the pot and the plant cannot grow any more. It is then that it needs to be transplanted.
Yes, God wants us to bloom where we’re planted, but we mustn’t become so comfortable with our place in life that we become pot-bound, and we fail to produce the blooms or fruit God wants us to produce.
So lets remember the following points:
1. We need to find out where God wants us to be.
2. We do this by praying and reading our Bibles and seeking Him for these answers.
3. We can also ask people in the Church around us who might have some answers.
4. We need to seek God on these answers so find out if they are right or not.
5. Seek to find out if the time to so something is now
6. Realise that sometimes God wants us to make ourselves vulnerable and take ourselves out of our comfort zones, and finally
7. Keep watering our faith with prayer, fasting, seeking God, Reading our Bibles and not allowing ourselves to become comfortable and unable to grow anymore.