Pastor's Blog
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May 2, 2011, 10:16 AM

Life From Dirt

We just had some concrete poured at our house. Turns out there is one area next to our porch where when it rains, it makes like Niagara Falls and was carving a hole in the ground. We looked into gutters, but would you believe it was actually cheaper to put in a small concrete patio (we also needed a little sidewalk so this seemed like a good idea). So we went through the church since it is actually their house, and we had money in the budget earmarked for this so we set the process in motion. We got it framed up, we had rebar put in, and then finally the day came when we got the concrete. Now we had talked with our contractor who had told us how he would wheelbarrow the concrete in from the truck. So when the concrete arrived I signed for it, and went inside to deal with Kenlee, who at the time was 2 days old. When I came back outside 15 minutes later, I noticed a large concrete truck in my backyard…with rear wheels sunk 18 inches into the ground, and a front wheel literally 30 inches in the ground. My first thought was…building and grounds is going to kill me!!!! Not only was our nice lawn with carpet grass now resembling small mountain ranges, but I dreaded what the truck had done to the sprinkler lines.
After the truck and contractors left, I turned on the system to assess the damage. I’m no genius, but when you turn the water on and it bubbles up from the ground nowhere near a sprinkler head, you got problems. I called Bill Pyle to come and look, and let’s just say seeing the yard did not make his day. But he is a spiritually mature man and instead of beating me about the head and shoulders for letting this happen, he simply sighed and said he’d be back with some help the next day and his new little John Deere© tractor which can pretty much do anything as we found out when we landscaped in front of the sanctuary (Johnny, if you’re reading this you’re welcome for the free publicity!).   
Well, long story short, that 1 day project turned into 2, and involved fixing no less than 2 breaks at junctions, relocating 2 heads that had been cemented over by the contractor, and multiple trips to Jauer’s for pvc supplies. However, we finally got the sprinkler’s fixed and the ruts filled in. But to make the ground level, we had to till up a large portion of the yard, which is now just dirt. Bryan Camber kept swearing to me that if I watered that dirt daily, the grass would come back like gangbusters, so I did for the next three weeks, and nothing!! All I got was wet dirt that I had to keep telling the girls not to play in.
But a funny thing happened yesterday. As I was leaving for work, I noticed that there was something in my dirt. So I got closer and realized, that all over the dirt new little sprigs of grass were popping up, filling in my man made desert with the much nicer carpet grass. All that watering had been worth it! So last night I poured it on again, and this time I was more excited because I knew I was giving that grass what it needed to take bare dirt and make it come alive with new life. And that’s when it hit me.
Right now in FBC University we’re doing Experiencing God. The people in my class have amazed me, and made my heart hurt. Many of them are just like my lawn! Things were ok, then some cement truck ran over them, and they are broken and tore up. And sure there’s been some work done, but now there are these huge dead patches in their lives, and it makes them question if God cares or likes them much less love them, and makes them wonder if it is worth the effort to even try and have relationship with Him. And as I watered the grass, God just whispered to me that those people are spiritually just like my yard. And my heart broke and I teared up…but that’s when God said something even better! He said that just like I was watering and giving the grass hidden beneath the dirt the water it needed to grow, that He was also raining down the Holy Spirit on the lives of His people, giving them what they needed. And they might not see it now, or understand what was happening, but that He was setting the stage for them to one day bring new life into those dead areas. And to have faith, and to keep encouraging them, because He was very much involved in their lives, He very much loved them, and He was in no way done with them but had great plans for them, REGARDLESS OF WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE NOW!!!
I know many of you out there right now have areas in your life just like my yard, where it is dead and broken and feels like nothing will ever live there again, but know that the God who loves you and made you and who calls you by name is not done with you yet. And while you might not be able to perceive or understand what He's doing in your life, know He is pouring into you, and cultiviating the new life that will one day take root there. And in the meantime...just hold onto Him with all you've got, and know that when you lose the strength to even hold onto Him, He'll be holding onto you, because He loves you that much! 
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