Day 16: Dwelling
Editor’s Note: Communications Associate Bekah Galucki reflects on spiritually dwelling in the Lord, despite where you may find yourself. In an overarching metaphor, she relates this idea of dwelling to the workings of nourishing a plant to its fullness of life.
When thinking about life’s major themes, especially in reflecting on what it means to dwell, I have found that this metaphor helps me explain things much clearer than I ever could on my own. With that, let’s pause and open our minds and hearts.
Simply put: We are plants in God’s living garden. All that we are and have, all that we reap or sow; it is all within His domain. We dwell within Himself.
Dwelling is correlated to growth, or more directly the space in which we can grow. In order for plants to grow, they must have the space and grace to do so. Through this prompt and the great gift of time, I have been able to look back and reflect on these different places life has found me. I see these different pots of life which I have been lovingly planted in. Three of my biggest pots, or places that I have called home (and places I will always think of as a home): Lawrenceville growing up & starting college, Athens where I went to school and more importantly came into my own, and now DC where I am pruning, growing, and strengthening those deep roots.
In moving from pot to pot, it was easy to feel lost in the shuffle or bruised from the impact. In those moments, I saw the transition as painful “uprooting” when in all actuality it was so much more than that. I was being thoughtfully “repotted”, a process that was so important in order for me to grow and vital to my life long-term. Sometimes we reach a certain capacity within each of our own pots, when we have fulfilled our call to bloom where we are planted. You can outgrow your pot, but He will sustain you still. He will pot you again to a new opportune place of growth or expand your capacity to grow beyond your knowledge; either way, He makes sure that we are growing always. Through the growth of triumph and the strengthening of tragedy, we dwell in Him. We trust in His will and rest in His plan.
Only now can I see from the perspective of my biggest pot yet that where you dwell will always be temporary; in whom you dwell is eternal. I may not always be in the same pot. I may be called to another one in order to grow. This will always be a possibility. But I will never leave the Good Gardener, nor will He ever abandon me. Endlessly, the Lord tends so lovingly to me and helps me bloom within the capacity of each pot He’s called me to. Only He knows when the pots will change, and where I will grow even more next. As I reflect on the time I spent within each individual space, I am even more grateful for the faithful gardener who has tended to me, and kept me growing in His good time.
This Advent, I challenge you to reflect on your own growth. Each of us start from seeds, which He faithfully and patiently tends to, so take a moment to look at how you’ve grown. Trust that you still have much more to grow; He will make sure of it. Rest in Him. You are exactly where you are supposed to be. Right now, you are slowly blooming where you’re planted, even if you can’t see it from your own pot. Keep the faith; He sees all your efforts.
I invite you to this little prayer I wrote to help you get into this headspace of contemplation:
Jesus as the loving gardener, help me to surrender in humility and love to your will for me. Holy Spirit as the good & fertile soil, grant me the grace to accept your presence as my sustenance amidst all of life’s seasons. God as the warm Sun and the cool rain, abide with me and bring much-needed comfort to my growth as together we brace the elements.
You, in all your wondrous forms, unceasingly give me life and dwell in me.
With all that I am, I choose to dwell in You.