“Bloom Where You’re Planted”

I’m sure you’ve most likely heard this saying, especially if you’re a military spouse because we frequently get uprooted and replanted. I just arrived in Germany, (my 13th replanting), and lately I’ve heard this saying frequently. Prior to our move, my aunt gave me a coffee mug that said, “Bloom Where You’re Planted”. As a parting gift a friend gave me a journal with flowers on it and the first thing she wrote in the inscription was, “Bloom Where You’re Planted.” This morning in my first PWOC in Stuttgart a marine wife shared she’s in a Marine Spouse support group and their motto is, “Bloom Where You’re Planted.” And, I just read a comment on Facebook from a friend who encouraged me to, “Bloom where I am planted.” Obviously, the Lord is speaking and I am listening.

Over the years at times when an assignment, like this one, has not been what I wanted this phrase has a sting to it. Inside, I cringe and recoil thinking, “I don’t want to bloom in this place.” But, I know the Lord wants me to bloom and be fruitful wherever He plants me. (“It is to my Father’s glory that you bear much fruit showing yourselves to truly be My disciples.” John 15:8) As I meditated on what the Lord has been speaking to me I was reminded by the Holy Spirit that often in order to bloom we have to be pruned. Pruning is a cutting back and removing of unfruitful branches. The goal is that the plant will be even more fruitful.

I wish I would’ve taken a picture of our neighbors house in Virginia. They have the large crab grass plants next to their home. They were huge but in the winter months they began to die. The leaves were brown, dry, breaking off and flying away. One day in the early spring as I was walking my golden retriever I noticed they had cut them to the stump. I thought to myself, “Wow, they really cut those back alot.” Basically, they chopped off the entire plant except for the roots and just a little on the top. I was amazed at the growth in just two short weeks. They were large, green, beautiful, and flourishing! I thought to myself, “That is a picture of the blessed work of pruning!”

Yes, in order to bloom where God plants us we often have to be pruned. Abraham said good bye to his family, friends, and a familiar place when he heard the Lord say, ” Leave your country, your kindred, and your father’s household and Go to the land I will show you.” (Genesis 12:1) The disciples also left their nets which was their profession and livelihood, and their father when Jesus called them saying, “Come follow Me and I will make you fishers of men.” (Matt. 4:19) Saying yes to God often means leaving some cherished treasures behind and this can feel like painful pruning. I know the Lord has purpose in the pain and pruning. I also know the Lord desires that His children will flourish and bloom and His pruning is so that we be even more fruitful for His kingdom and glory. May the Great Gardner have His way in our lives in Jesus Name I pray, Amen! (John 15)

By Stacie Dorris