Would you believe that last year, this rose bush did not bloom one single flower? Not one.single.rose. It looked DEAD as a doornail. Oh, it still had thorns of course, but never did we see anything remotely red, pink or burgundy from it. Now look.
This rosebush is going to TOWN. It’s out of control with multiple, beautiful blooms. I may even have to trim it back a bit, but I’m just not ready for that. Right now, I’m just enjoying the glorious intricacy of each flower, its colorful effect on my flowerbed, and the view from the street.
It’s a reminder to me that everything has a season. Some seasons don’t produce any flowers. Oh, the thorns are still there – but not a single glimpse of red, pink or burgundy blooms. Then there are times where the roses are overwhelmingly abundant.
Have you ever know or heard of missionaries that were serving in a remote land and after 5 or even 10 years had not seen one person come to the Lord? I can’t imagine how frustrating and discouraging that would be – a constant rosebush with just thorns. But, what they didn’t see was the rosebush growing healthy roots underneath and down the road – the one, two or few converts they were blessed with multiplied to create a great movement for God. We don’t see what God is doing when we just have the almost dead rosebush – still with its thorns. But, He is working. In the meantime, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.1 Corinthians 15:58
Ecclesiastes 3 tells us that everything has its season. Everything has its time and place. And God has made everything beautiful for its own time (vs. 11). Hang tight through the thorn-bush – for God is working out a flourishing rose bush behind the scenes.
For everything there is a season,
a time for every activity under heaven.
2 A time to be born and a time to die.
A time to plant and a time to harvest.
3 A time to kill and a time to heal.
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
4 A time to cry and a time to laugh.
A time to grieve and a time to dance.
5 A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones.
A time to embrace and a time to turn away.
6 A time to search and a time to quit searching.
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
7 A time to tear and a time to mend.
A time to be quiet and a time to speak.
8 A time to love and a time to hate.
A time for war and a time for peace.