I haven’t had much success with plants over the years. Usually within a few months it becomes obvious that my thumb is not green! Different plants need varying amounts of sunlight and water. And I just have never taken the time to learn that detail. Until I inherited a small tree planter when I moved into my office. Hidden between the desk and wall was a two foot tree stalk that had two branches with a few leaves and what I call a dead end. It looked like a branch had been growing there but was completely cut off and nothing ever grew back.
My first thought was that I was pretty sure it was doomed given my past experience with live plants. But a funny thing happened. I sat it up on my desk for a couple of days while my office was being painted and I noticed that in just that short amount of time the plant actually looked a little greener.
So I named it “Hank” and I moved it over by my office window. I made Mondays my ‘water Hank’ day. One of my co-workers came in every morning and started telling Hank how much better he looked. So I started talking to Hank. And Hank started growing like crazy. More and more growth on those original branches were happening. And then, that dead end that I mentioned, began to sprout a new shoot!
Attention and care was all Hank needed to come to life. Today, Hank is thriving and probably needs repotting although that may be beyond my capabilities! Attention and care. Isn’t that what we all need?! Is there someone in your purview that God is tugging at your heart to speak to? to encourage? to nudge into the light? to water a bit with the living Word?
1 Thessalonians 5:11 from The Message gives us the life giving care instructions: “So speak encouraging words to one another. Build up hope so you’ll all be together in this, no one left out, no one left behind. I know you’re already doing this; just keep on doing it.”