Realizing the presence, promise, and power of the Kingdom of God.

Pot luck

Pot luck

Having had enough of the cold, I am in my house, trying to see something in a new way. My tiny rose bush catches my attention. It is surprisingly healthy.

At best, I am an adequate gardener. If I have a green thumb, it is more likely to be because of a leaking marker than any propagational prowess. When winter approaches, I grab the few houseplants I have released into the fresh air and drag them back inside. If they could, they would surely spread their roots and branches to grab the door frame like a reluctant toddler and cup their leaves to shape a silent “Nooooo!” Spending a winter in our house is a death sentence to an unlucky few each year. I’m sure the word has gotten out.

This rose, however, has flourished. It does have a select spot by a window. And when I’m home, I am careful to keep it watered. But I also was so distracted when I brought it in, I just placed it on top of the pot of one of those former, less fortunate plants. Title of my future book: Haphazard Horticulture.


But that, I believe, is why it’s so verdant. The soil in its small pot dries out quickly, but not the dirt underneath. I was not surprised to find the rose’s roots have worked their way down into the supporting soil, connecting the two.

It’s a pointed variation on Jesus’ metaphor in John 15. “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.” (vs. 4) Just like the rose, my soil just cannot maintain a spiritual vitality on its own. I simply have to sink my roots into the deeper, richer pot of God’s love and power.

It is that easy being green.

Jesus, you are my source of all that I need. Today, I will work on abiding in you. I will tap into your goodness, your patience, your purpose. How good you are to supply such nourishment in abundance!

Bruce Van Patter

As a freelance illustrator, graphic recorder, and author, Bruce is on a lifelong journey to delight in the handiwork of the Creator. And he’s always ready for fellow travelers.

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