I planted sunflower seeds yesterday. The flower pot sits on our front porch, and I wait for the seeds to germinate. When they do, when the plants are a little more established, I will transfer them to the garden. I'm excited and looking forward to the growing process. I have to be, because if I choose to be excited about the end result, about those big, gorgeous flowers, I'll be disappointed. You see, sunflowers don't usually bloom until August, and I won't actually get to experience the fruits of my labor. By the time they bloom, I'll be back in State College and I won't actually get to experience the beauty of the flowers themselves. I won't get to admire them from the kitchen window. I won't get to cut them and place them in a vase.
So much of life is about learning to appreciate the process because the end result is uncertain or may never come. Ministry is a lot like that, as are all relationships with others. We may never know the impact we've had on those we've come in to contact with. My relationship with God can be like that too. I follow where He leads, but I don't necessarily see the end result. As I spend this summer away from my friends, talking with people about my ministry, and as I go back to the ministry and my life in August, I want to remember this lesson that the sunflowers are teaching me. I want to remember that I don't need to know the end of the story, or to experience it for myself, I just need to play the part God has called me to play. I need to be willing to put myself out there, and be comfortable with uncertainty. I need to rest in the confidence that, at any given moment, I'm exactly where I should be.
Hebrews 10: 35
So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.