A short time ago, my parents’ home, our family home, burned to the ground. Only thanks to a passerby did my parents get out uninjured. They lost everything in the fire.
I reached out to a blogging group I belong to asking for help with my blog while I traveled to be with and help my parents. The response overwhelmed me and brought tears to my eyes. My Christian family held out their arms to me, pulled me in, and helped me. Loved me. People I’d never even met before. Such blessings in a storm!
Today’s post is written by Mitzi Neely from Peacefully Imperfect. Be sure to check out her bio below and visit her website. I know you’ll be blessed as I have been by her words, faith, and love.
Bloom Where You Are Planted by Mitzi Neely
I love when life is filled with contentment, joy, and happiness. I relish when family and work rock along steady and sure. There are times however, when I sense an anxiousness or restlessness taking root in me, and I want to shake things up and try something new.
But I like my comfort zone; sometimes, I like it too much. Other times, I’m like, ‘Who doesn’t want change every now and then?’
For those who know me, I am a driven individual—always planning, preparing, and committed to whatever I am working on. My prayer life and my faith keep me grounded and steady, and my conversations with my Heavenly Father are genuine and heartfelt. I know without a doubt He has my back, and I know what peace feels like, and when it doesn’t exist.
We all deal with life’s big and little challenges, but it’s what we do with them that matters most. Despite losing precious family members and friends, enduring student tragedies, and dealing with the up’s and down’s of everyday life, I’ve almost always managed to keep a smile. I can tell you that while most of the challenges were not life threatening, there have been several occasions when I was forced to step back and re-examine why things happened the way they did.
In two fairly big situations, I believed both opportunities carried rewards that far outweighed the negatives and each would present blessings. Neither time did God agree with me. I remember spending hours and months praying about those decisions and every step of the way believing I was moving in the direction He was leading. I never questioned the process, but I struggled with the outcomes.
After each of these scenarios played out, a dear friend and mentor met with me. He brought me the notes he had prepared in outline form and fully supported each point with scripture. Everything he wrote was important and uplifting, but one particular part stood out. It said, ‘count your blessings and bloom where you are planted.’
My human disappointment hasn’t always come with ‘counting my blessings,’ at least not initially. But, 1 Corinthians 7:17 NIV, tells us, “Only let each person walk in the life that the Lord has assigned to him, and to which God has called him.” It does not get any clearer than that. And, John 15:5 NIV says, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me he can do nothing.”
Our conversations dealt with the disappointment and the hurt, looking at the big picture, examining the reality of the situation, and then thinking about the future. As we worked through each of the steps, he said to me, “You have been through the human part of this, now it is time to deal with the spiritual part.”
I think it is important to note that the human part almost always outlasts all the other things. I can put the spiritual part in perspective. I can study the scriptures that my Heavenly Father has so lovingly provided to comfort me and take away my hurt. I can awaken the next day and know that He knows what is best for me.
It is the human part of me that sometimes wants to cling to the outcome—the side that analyzes and replays every question, every answer, every decision, every reason, and realizing it still doesn’t makes sense. It’s because it didn’t happen the way I wanted or planned.
It took me months to work through the stages of these disappointments, but I have not let them define who I am.
Instead, I developed 5 ways to deal with circumstances and disappointments when things don’t go as planned.
1. We must realize that a situation must fit God’s plan and timing and we shouldn’t question it. Another opportunity may already be on its way.
2. It’s good to have goals and target dates, but we must listen to God when He says,‘no, or not yet.’
3. We know that He protects us from problems or bad situations, and we must continue to pray for His timing and protection.
4. We must let the disappointment go, learn a lesson, and be humble.
5. We must COUNT OUR BLESSINGS AND BLOOM WHERE WE ARE PLANTED.
So when I get restless or anxious, I think back on these two situations and how each experience has taught me to enjoy the moment I’m in right now. I’ve also learned to never wish away an opportunity, an activity, a job, or an event, just because I feel ready for something else.
God’s word tells us in Jeremiah 29:11, “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.”
I know this because of my journey with Him. It also helps to know that He is my Father and His plans for me are good and full of hope.
As we reflect on the things that do not go according to our plans, it’s important to embrace the thorns or the difficult parts and choose to bloom anyway.
There are things that I thought I wanted, but did not get; it’s because they were not best for me. In looking back at both situations, I am so thankful God was in charge and had the very best plan mapped out for me.
It is reassuring to know that I can look anyone in the eye and tell them how grateful and thankful I am that He always knows what I need, and what I don’t. He is the Master with the master plan, and I will not be shaken.
I’ll be praying for peace and for the decisions and situations you may face. Be still, and know that He is God.
Blessings & Hugs,
Mitzi Neely is an inspiring motivational speaker who encourages women of all ages through her experiences and shortcomings. She has been blessed with a passion and love for people that stretches across the generations. Her heart is to lighten your load, while conveying her message that nobody’s perfect. So often God places certain people in your life at just the right moment; whether the reason is to help teach you, help you grow in your walk with Him, or to simply love and lift up others. Whatever your struggle or need, you will find encouragement through her words as she refreshes your heart and renews your joy.
Follow Mitzi at www.peacefullyimperfect.net because the joy of the journey is learning in His word together.