Tag Archives: blossoms

Simple & Holy

Simplify. What a beautiful, absolutely refreshing concept it is that this word implies. Rather than meaning mundane, plain, or boring, as some might think, to me this word fully encompasses what a renewed life should, and can, look like. In the New Year we simplify and set goals for the next 12 months, during spring cleaning we organize our homes, rooms, and closets and simplify them. When one is baptized into the Kingdom of G-d they choose to simplify their heart and make room for what is now most important. We do undertake this idea of simplifying periodically, but it is not enough. Piles upon piles of junk accumulate anyway, in our thoughts, words, bedrooms, minds, lives, etc. I don’t know about you, but I feel like my heart & soul could really use a breath of fresh air to cleanse myself from this clutter daily

To dig even deeper into this idea of simplicity, though, let’s build a connection between it and the word Holiness. I have been learning a lot about both of these terms recently, and how curiously similar they really are. To be simple can also mean to be holy. Any everyday occurrence, such as putting on your shoes or making the bed, can become a meaningful way to elevate ourselves to G-d. Just by purposely thinking about how thankful I am to have multiple pairs of shoes that I get to choose from each day, or praising G-d for blessing me with a comfortable bed and a house to sleep in every night during the process of these things, I can work towards achieving this state of elevation. It is all about having a positive, grateful mindset.

Think about the moment of baby Jesus’ birth. There was nothing absolutely extraordinary about it from first glance. I mean, yes, legions of angels appeared in the sky and sang praises to a baby whose birth was witnessed by farm animals, but still, for the most part it was a simple night, with simple people. But it was also the holiest of all holy nights. This occasion in history, as well as all the other stories that are written in the Bible for us to read at any time, sets a perfect example of marrying these two concepts, simplicity and holiness, and receiving a breathtaking life full of His blessing in return.

xoxo,

Ashton

Life Is A Garden

Life is a garden, God is the gardener, and we are the flowers. Gardens are full of beautiful, unique characters. So is life. Gardens create a wonderful home for roses, daisies, lilacs, and dandelions alike. Life does that for humans as well.

Flowers are diverse in stature, in quality, and color, and smell, and virtue- and some are better than others- however, where the gardener has set them, there they stand, and do not quarrel with one another. –John Bunyan in ‘The Pilgrim’s Progress’

Let’s attempt to compare this with our lives. God would be the gardener and we -humans- are the blossoms. Every flower is uniquely created in all types of variety, and each have a different talent that benefits the gardener. A hand full of them seem as if they are always good-looking & better than the rest. Sound familiar? This happens all the time with us. We idolize certain celebrity’s (or simply our own friends) with the mindset that they always have things going in their favor & live the perfect life. When, in reality, they are doing that exact thing to someone else. We always judge ourselves more than those around us. What separates us from being exactly like the flowers in the example? Humans do not simply stand where God has placed us- we want excitement & are greedy. However, the gorgeous(and not-so-gorgeous) blooms are content to settle where it is most beneficial to the gardener. We are all made uniquely & exactly how God intended us to be.

Honestly, it makes me so sad to see people trying to change themselves, whether in a physical way, personality-wise, or mentally. God specifically tells us that we are made in His image & should praise Him because we are fearfully and wonderfully made(Psalm 139:14). We don’t need to alter our bodies or way of thinking so other people, or even ourselves, will like us more. The problem is: we are focusing completely on ourselves when we try to do this. All the glory belongs to God- so let’s not steal it from Him.

Here’s another example we can correlate with this topic: ‘There was a tree whose inside was all rotten and gone, and yet it grew and had leaves. What does this mean? This tree, whose outside is fair, and whose inside is rotten, is that to which many may be compared that are in the garden of God; who with their mouths speak high in behalf of God, but indeed will do nothing for him; whose leaves are fair, but their heart good for nothing but to be tinder for the devil’s tinder-box.’ Does your life appear to others as the flourishing, ideal lifestyle everyone is searching for? If so, I bet you a nickel & a penny that it sure doesn’t feel like the perfect life to you. It can be plain out exhausting to fake your thoughts, actions & feelings. Trust me I’ve tried it, it’s no fun. Instead of being all talk & giving the illusion of loving God to the fullest, let’s try to do things for our heavenly Father, the one who created us, who cares for us, and loves us unconditionally. In other words, let’s commit to being like the flowers, content with where we are and what we have.

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xo,

«Ashton»