Thursday, March 11, 2010

Refections for March 11, 2010

"Opening A Rosebud"

Years ago I heard a story that reminded me of my own life. It was about a young seminarian walking in the seminary garden with one of his professors. The young man was expressing his doubts and frustrations about his future. He expressed his uncertainty about what God’s plan was for him. The two men approached a beautiful rose bush. The professor removed one of the rosebuds and handed it to the young student. He asked him to unfold the rosebud without damaging any of the petals. The student soon found his efforts to be in vain. The harder he tried the bigger mess he made. The rose petals began to come apart and to fall to the ground.

Seeing the young man’s frustration, the older man reminded the younger that only God could open the rosebud and display the beautiful peddles unharmed. He told him his life was like the rosebud. He reminded him to stop trying so hard and to trust in the Master to show him the way. The Master would straighten the curves and make the rough spots smooth. His only requirement was to trust the Master and to be receptive to His leadership.

As I listened to the story, I could not help but think of the different stages of my life. There have been times when I desperately wanted to know God’s will. The problem was I wanted to know it immediately. It was not that I wanted to be disobedient. To the contrary, I wanted to do great things for God. Each time I took things into my own hands, I fell on my face, frustrated and confused.

Out of the frustration came the realization that Jesus’ words, “Apart from Me you can do nothing.” were true. If we are to be like the rose and to develop to our full potential, we must learn the secret of surrendering to the Master. He will unfold our lives and make us into what He wants us to be.

If you are like me, you do not like the idea of surrender. However, it is not until we accept the fact that apart from Him we can do nothing that we can realize that through Him we can do all things. When we finally surrender, the Master begins to bring things together and we begin to catch glimpses of the future and what He has in store for us. With each move He makes, we learn that He will always provide everything we need to do the thing or things He wants us to do.

Maybe you are frustrated in your search for God’s will for your life. Let me encourage you to give up and surrender to Him. Allow Him to peel back your petals and make you into the beautiful and useful person He wishes you to be.

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