One must move to grow. Think of a flowering, potted plant. When the plant has outgrown the pot its potential beauty is thwarted. Packed roots become tangled roots, sometimes raising a plant at an awkward angle exposing what should never be seen. This effectively takes away from the beauty of the plant. The over-accumulation of roots suck up the nourishment that the buds need to bloom. Left in a pot too small for growth, the mass of tangled roots must then be carefully removed from the existing pot to one better suited for its survival—for its intended use.
Sometimes it’s not pruning that needs to happen, but a total transplant.
Some roots will have straggled out through the drainage hole in the bottom of the pot. These are those hairy, less vigorous roots that are so delicate they must be cut from the livelier roots and discarded. This is necessary for the greater good of the plant. The pot may need to be broken, gently cracked apart to save the undernourished buds from starvation. Upon inspection, the root ball will have overwhelmed the amount of soil in the pot giving it to take on the shape of the pot without the adequate sustenance that the nutrient-rich soil once provided.
To have added plant food to the pot, instead of removing the plant to a larger pot, would have burned the soil-deprived roots, potentially killing the entire plant. Those intended blooms would not stand a chance at thriving because life is in the roots, in the hidden places, much like the commencement of human life in the womb.
Recently, my husband discussed the process of luxury vinyl tile (LVT) flooring. Once the preparatory work is done, flooring adhesive is used to set the LVT to a sub-floor. There are times when one tile is defective along the adjoining edge. This may not be obvious until it is glued in place; however, unless the bad tile is immediately pulled up and replaced by a good tile, the finished work would be thrown off. What may have been a barely noticeable 1/16-inch adjustment would then become a 2-inch eyesore by the time of the the job’s completion. At that point, a major, cumbersome tear out would be necessary to rectify the mistake.
Tying the growth process to tiling floors, he went on to say that most people would attempt to rip up the defective tile in one swoop. The problem with that attempt is that once a LVT tile is glued down it “cannot be budged!” Patience and skill must be employed to remove the tile in the most effective way. Again, like with the root ball, cutting must take place for successful removal. Slowly peeling back a corner of the tile, at the same time cutting the glue strands along the way, before you’d know it the tile would be loosed. Unless those strands of glue were cut from the tile, a contractor would be there all day, sticky, sweaty, and frustrated, having gotten nowhere.
Commensurately, some people are not willing to cut the glue strands that keep them stuck in life. These are the fearful, the faithless, the oppressed, the unteachable, and the lazy. The glue being unhealthy relationships, old haunts, mental strongholds, habits, and addictions.
They are toxic attachments—multipurpose ones—to keep these people stuck like the multipurpose glue holding the tile to the sub-floor. Instead, they want a quick fix, but won’t exercise the patience it takes to cut unhealthy ties for a sound and safe trajectory in life. Continuing the same behaviors, they will repeatedly make excuses to remain in the discomfort that inevitably leads to dysfunction. They soon become like those undernourished buds straining to bloom. Like the pot needs the potter and the tile needs the tile-setter, so the created needs the Creator.
We all have purposes that will propel us to destiny, but we must grow out. We all must cut ties to expand our horizons. We all must break free from the people and things that have misshaped us to fit their molds.
Changing Residency – The force of chaos in life will either grow you out of your familiar environment, to be reshaped by freedom, or your bondage will become acceptable to you. There you would merely exist, allowing negative habits and the pull of others to keep you stuck in that which is familiar. Misery does love company; you can always find someone in complaint-mode to make excuses with you. Here’s a caveat, excuses don’t excuse you. Time will progress with or without your permission. Many have exclaimed, too late, “If only I had more time!”
Painful experiences require courage for there to be growth past its debilitating effects. No change, no change. If you refuse to experience remorse, sorrow, and regret later in late, you must change now.
Financial Stability – There are grace gifts in every day. Grace is not a pass to merely exist, it is the power to thrive! How many grace gifts have you refused today? Work is necessary to establish your significance, both to yourself and to humanity. Disabilities and illnesses notwithstanding, “Lazy people will never enjoy prosperity. If you can work, then you should work. Living off someone else’s labor, as a government handout, or in someone else’s home should not be an end goal” (Pastor Grant Thigpen). Assistance of any type is a transitional aid to something better—to your independence.
“What should I do,” you ask? Below are five steps that you can begin to work on today.
- PEN YOUR DREAMS – Begin writing your thoughts. This can be as a private journal, or with the intent to publish your work to help others. Perhaps you will one day write an article for your favorite magazine? A manuscript for a book? Whether you intend to publish your writing it will benefit you. Date what you write. When you put something on paper, it makes it real. This is not for social media; this is for you.
- COME UP WITH REALISTIC GOALS – Plan, to achieve what you want. Be deliberate. Focus. You may not have what you want, but you should know what you want. Keep a separate “Plan Execution” journal with specific goals and dates by which they may be accomplished. This can simply be a vision board or dream board. Think outside of the box. Get a poster board, some colored pencils, crayons, paint, or markers and get busy. It doesn’t have to be fancy, just get’er done! Hint: The Dollar Tree. Or you may simply print out a piece of paper with a colorful list of your dated goals. K.I.S.S. Go to your public library or online for inspiration.
- SPEAK YOUR PASSIONS – Declare aloud those things on your vision board, those things that make your heart skip a beat. Speak your truth against those things that piss you off. Make it personal using first-person pronouns such as “I declare today…” and “My life will be…”. When you’re done, turn on some lively music and cut a celebratory jig. Shake off those excuses!
- POST YOUR PROMISES – Display the goals you’ve written where you can see them daily. Reviewing what you hold yourself accountable for will refocus you when you’ve muddled the plan, overthought the plan, or confided your plan to too many people confusing you with too many ideas. Break your goals down into steps, then stick to the plan. For example: Goal – find a job. Step 1, jot down all my skills. Step 2, verify my dates of employment and education. Step 3, write my objective. Step 4, start creating my resume, etc. Every completed step will bring you that much closer to your goal.
- EXECUTE YOUR PLAN – This is that exciting time after your courageous groundwork has been laid. You’ve changed your thinking to transplant yourself from the confining situations that had adversely shaped your life. You’ve cut all the glue strands that had held you captive—depressed, oppressed, and suppressed. Those non-affirming people, places, thoughts, and habits are no longer a part of your life. Now is your time to bloom!
“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the LORD. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope'” (Jeremiah 29:11).
Be blessed! Let me hear from you soon!