Wednesday, April 24, 2013

A Bloom for Every Season


In every season God is working in our lives. Nothing reminds me more of that than the beautiful grounds of the Biltmore estate in Asheville, North Carolina. Every time I visit I feel like I’m entering an enchanted forest. Towering trees greet me and more than a million visitors every year as we drive through miles of rolling hills. A mansion that rivals the manors of Europe, the Biltmore house is the largest private home in the United States.

I love to visit Biltmore at any time of the year—to see the house surrounded by golds, oranges, and reds in the fall or to count one more time the house’s thirty-eight Christmas trees in December. But recently, spring and summer have become my two favorite seasons. From early spring to fall, the Biltmore gardens showcase exquisite, timeless flowers—tulips and daffodils in the spring, roses and dahlias in the summer, and chrysanthemums in the fall. The winter garden inside the house’s atrium displays poinsettias for Christmas. Every season has its blooms and beauty.

In every season of our lives, God is tending the soil of our hearts and nurturing the blooms of our spirit. Whether we go through a season of peace and overflowing joy or a season of struggles and conflict, God can produce from that season the blooms of grace in us and the fruit of godly character. If we are willing to seek God, practice the principles of His Word, and cooperate with His work in our lives, every season will have its beauty and triumphs.

The road to victory and peace isn’t easy, and the growing process can take its toll on us. Two things can help us when we feel overwhelmed by a difficult season—remembering the good and doing good. When trials seem unbearable, don’t forget the good—the blessings God has given, His presence with you, His unending supply of grace and strength, and the truths and promises of His Word. When you don’t know what else to do, do what God has taught you so far—continue to read His Word, pour out your heart to Him in prayer, receive His comfort and direction, surround yourself with believers who encourage you, and depend on God to triumph in everyday life. God will be faithful to teach you more and to give you what you need to come out strong and victorious.
In every season the Master Gardener is at work. When we look to Him, He will produce in us the most exquisite traits of strength, perseverance, godliness, and goodness. He knows how to cultivate hard times to yield much glorious good. So count on Him and His investment in your circumstances, and do your part. Remember the good, and do the good that you know. This season’s blooms will be something to cherish for a lifetime.

 “The LORD will guide you continually, and … you shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.” Isaiah 58:11, NKJV
 
*All pictures taken by Katy Kauffman at Biltmore, Asheville, North Carolina

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