Monday, August 20, 2012

Plant, Water, Grow

Over 15 years ago,
in the basement of a church,
a 6 week marriage workshop was being held.
It was advertised city wide and there were hopes for good attendance.
My husband and I were there to help host the event.
The special speakers were
set, hand-outs were made and tables were set up as we waited for people to arrive.
 One couple came....
Just one

My husband and I had no plans to stay for the whole event.
We were just in charge of setting up and representing the host church.
Once things were under way, we had planned to head home.
But, with only one couple in attendance, we felt obligated to stay and participate.
The speakers had worked so hard to put this together,
it was the least we could do.

So, we spent 6 weeks with a couple we had never met
and the teachers of the workshop.

It was, of course, a God appointment 

This young couple loved God, but knew their marriage was in trouble. 
They had no money for marriage counseling,
but were hopeful that this workshop would help.

God had plans for this couple 

Big plans

Plans that were planted deep in their hearts
that they did not even know were there yet.

After the 6 week workshop,
My husband and I were blessed to be used by God,
to continue to help them begin to get loose
of all the crud that was keeping them from living the life God had for them.
We invested in their family.
We watered what had been planted. 
We spent many weekends together.
Sharing meals,
sharing life
and discussing big and little things.   

For having such a young marriage, they had been through a lot.
Some of their trials were big,
and some were small.

Time passed and we moved away.
But the growing had begun.

The husband decided to go to Seminary.
It was a huge sacrifice.
At first he drove hours to get to class.
All while working full time,
raising a family
and serving in their home church.

Eventually they moved closer to seminary
as he was nearing his last years of school.
He continued to work full time, go to school full time, and help raise a family.
She kept their home, parented the children and took a few classes herself.

They continued to be watered
They continued to grow.

My husband and I were just a part of the process.
A piece of their story.
We continued to stay in touch.

My husband became his mentor during the last year he was in seminary.
They talked on the phone and met for lunch on occasion
 to discuss life and being a leader in church and home.

And then he graduated and became a pastor of a small town church.
They learned a lot
about themselves and church life through that experience.

Fast-forward to today....
My husband and I were out of town and realized we were only a town away from where they were currently serving. He is the pastor of a church in a different small town. We gave him a call to get directions and on Sunday surprised his wife and kids by coming to Sunday service.

We were so proud. He did such a good job with the sermon and we could tell that he loved his sheep. Although they have only been at the church for under 2 years, they consider it their home and the body their family.
We were able to have lunch with them a few days later to hear their hearts.
They love the Lord. Leading a church is hard. Their hearts break for the sheep and they long to lead them to greener pastures. But sheep can be stubborn.
We prayed for one another. It was wonderful.

15 years
Planting
Watering
Growing

Many hands, feet and prayers invested in this family

God did the growing
and continues to do the growing.    

I know we don't always get to see what investing/watering in others leads to.
But every once in a while, God allows us to see....       

Oh how marvelous
Oh how wonderful   

1 Corinthians 3:6 - 9
I (Paul) planted the seed,
and Apollos watered it.
But God is the One who made it grow.
So the one who plants is not important,
and the one who waters is not important.
Only God, who makes things grow, is important.
The one who plants and the one who waters have the same purpose,
and each will be rewarded for his own work.
We are God's workers, working together;
you are like God's farm, God's house.  

2 comments:

  1. Thanks Cheryl for the encouragement.IT was good to see u guy again

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great reminder of what we are to do. Serve others and sow seeds knowing that only the Lord will grow what he intends to grow.

    Thanks for the words of encouragement today!
    Blessings

    ReplyDelete