God, you are Powerful
You are our Provider,
You hear our Prayers.
You are the Prince of Peace.
You keep your Promises.
And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus. (Phil. 4:19)
Lord, I want to Praise you.
Bless the LORD, O my soul; And all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, Who satisfies your mouth with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. (Ps. 103:1-5 NKJV)
I had but one rosebush in the yard of my last house. I had planted it a year after we moved into the house. I gave the bush no care, and it disappeared. About five years later, during a time of difficulty, I felt too overwhelmed to do any yard work. My flowerbeds became jungles of weeds.
One day, as I walked up the driveway toward the mailbox, a flash of red on the left caught my eye. I walked over and sadly surveyed the overgrown beds, feeling helpless to do anything to improve them. As I bent to investigate, I discovered a lone red rose amidst the debris, a faithful remnant of the bush I had planted so long ago. It was as if God said, “I’m still here among the weeds and thorns of your life. I will surprise you with joys like this one along the way.”
I can’t describe how much the rose meant to me that day and ever since, as the little bush bloomed again and again. So when I put my beloved house on the market for financial reasons, one of the hardest things to leave was my rosebush. I knew that roses don’t transplant well, and my thumb is not particularly green, anyway. I walked around the yard frequently, always winding up at the bush, crying and grieving my losses.
Amazingly, God brought a lovely and gracious couple from Jerusalem who bought my house, and I am happy that it is now theirs. But once the house was sold, I despaired.
One Saturday morning I prayed, “Where will I go, Lord? I’ve got three children and no place to go!”
I had looked at houses I could afford, and many were dismal. As I got up off my knees, the phone rang. It was a realtor friend who said he had a few houses to show me that afternoon. I dreaded looking at more depressing places.
But when we stepped into the cute, little white house near downtown, I said, “I want it.” I didn’t even go out to the yard or garage in my excitement over the meticulously maintained, charming home. The house had been on the market only three days, and we wrote a contract immediately.
A couple of weeks later, I had the opportunity to meet the owners. After I told them how I loved their house, the wife said, “I’ll be working on the rosebushes in the yard this weekend. There are 13 of them.” Tears crept from my eyes as I realized that God had replaced my one rosebush with many more. Surely, He surprises me continually.
Although he never promised that life would be a continual rose garden, he has shown me his love again and again in his generous provision for me.
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by Barbara Kois
Barbara Kois is a freelance writer, editor, author coach, and corporate communication consultant. She was born in Mobile, Alabama, and her family moved to Clifton, New Jersey, and then to Illinois while she was growing up. She has three grown children. She has written or co-written eight books.