Bloom Where You are Planted

I admit it. I have a flower problem. There is something magical and miraculous about watching a plant grow, a bulb to form, then finally culminate in a beautiful bulb. Since I have a flower problem, I dug up my daylilies and irises when we moved from Winnfield to my new appointment at Grace United Methodist Church in Ruston. Now the question became where to plant them so that they could put down roots and flourish.

The author’s daylilies planted along the back fence, looking out to the woods behind the house.

After much thought, I decided to place them along a back fence. It is not an ideal location. It receives a few hours less sunlight than the full sun the flowers like best. When I tilled up the soil, it was a typical north Louisiana red clay, again not the best. But I knew the flowers would not grow in a moving box. So I planted them anyway and told them to “bloom where you are planted.”

It is a phrase I have heard our Louisiana Conference bishop tell us as clergy. “Bloom where you are planted.” In the United Methodist system clergy are appointed, or sent, from one church to another. Clergy can be sent to a church that they don’t know, to a place where they have never lived, moved from one end of the state to the other. Our calling is to “bloom where you are planted” and make a difference for Christ wherever we go.

What if we looked at life that way? What if we decided to bloom where are planted each day? What if we decided not to let our circumstances, which are often challenging, not determine our attitude? Do you have a job that is not your dream job? Bloom where you are planted. Have a class at school that is less than your favorite? Bloom anyway.
The apostle Paul writes in Philippians 3:12-14 “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” The amazing thing is that Paul wrote these words from a Roman prison. If Paul can find contentment in a Roman prison, than surely we can find contentment in our lives.

Will my flowers grow and bloom? I hope so, but only time will tell. But you and I can make a conscious choice to be content, to make the most of each day, and to bloom where we are planted. Can you imagine what a difference that attitude could make in our lives, our community, and our world? I pray that you will bloom where you are planted today.

Blooming where I am planted,
Kevin Smith