Is It Me Or The Stench Of The Situation?

There is a distinct smell.

And there is no hiding it!

Fertilizer, compost or manure, whatever the choice, there will always be a smell.  And sometimes it can be very overpowering.

The outcome of using fertilizer correctly can be phenomenal and often when the end result is achieved, the smell is soon forgotten.

I liken the procedure of gardening to many a personal experience, reflecting on this similarity quite often, though it is one of my latest experiences that seems to be higher on the ‘smell’ list!

I was recently sharing with a friend how this particular situation caused me to feel like I had been personally placed in a very strong smelling pile of manure, (ok not of the real kind, but you know those situations in life that just feel like you have been “crapped on”).

The situation itself was bad enough, but this experience made me feel like the smell was causing others to refrain from being a part of my life.

Circumstances in my life changed and as life-changing decisions needed to be made, for reasons unknown to me, there seemed to be less help and support.

On reflection of this, I have now discovered the truth; that being that these experiences are in fact a means of discovering who ones true and valuable friends are.

I am not sure that I have found any answers even after travelling a similar road to this many times in the past, except to say that even with the emotional pain and hurt experienced, being different in each situation, there is always one common denominator –the opportunity to learn one more lesson! (maybe even more than one)

Let me share my analogy with you, allowing a picture to paint a thousand words!

I visualized myself as a large rose bush (I chose the rose for the long lasting fragrance it delivers, along with its beauty and longevity). I have recently been replanted into a small garden, standing alone as the feature, being seen by all. All my previous growth had been cut off to allow for new shoots to grow, so I felt not only exposed but also isolated.

With the RE-planting itself feeling like it had taken a toll on my ability to stand tall, I inwardly yearned for a strong and tall stake to be placed along side of me to bring support and comfort in my new home.

Prior to my arrival to this garden, a strong smelling combination of manure had been mixed into the soil, causing a fresh and very strong smell – it was a stench like no other. Although this was prepared to support my health and growth and in time to allow me to produce a beautiful smelling rose, I began to believe it was created to make me feel even more excluded.

The replanting, cutting back and fertilizing were all for my good and future growth but OH it was not feeling so grand right now!

Like the rose, I found my particular experience very lonely and the cause of many questions, such as “Is it me, the situation or the smell of it that others are avoiding?”; “Is the stench so bad that others cannot stand to be around me?”

Then as this caused me to pour out my heart and hurt to God, I started to see that it could also be that others are witnessing the way I am handling this experience, thus causing them to question their own journey of life. As others witness the way God works in my life, maybe the waft of the fertilizer of my ‘garden’ will be helpful to them.

Through this I have also experienced others treating me differently when I do not meet all their criteria, and I have now chosen to believe that it is because they simply do not know how to handle or treat the situation and probably never will unless they too have to deal with it; then maybe they will be reminded of someone who has gone through it AND survived!

(But there are times that I wish I was not being used as an example or display for others.)

I did not at this time or ever in the past expect others to be able to fix my situation or even have answers, but just a desire for genuine support and a willingness to listen.

As I remind myself that any great garden that produces fruit or blossom needs great manure, I am able to more easily accept that this, and whatever comes along, is all for my good.

God only ever does good for both you and me.

God’s promise for this – Romans 8:28



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Book DEBrief

"Undaunted" by Christine Caine

A book I will read again!

The story that Christine shares is personal and impacting, full of honesty and openness. I related to so much of what she had to share and was extremely encouraged.

Christine is with no doubt a woman of faith, but it is the way in which she openly shares the journey of faith, including the thoughts of doubt and question and the wonder of how it will all work out that for me was the greatest encouragement.

I often feel like a lesser woman of faith when I begin to doubt, yet what I learnt from this real life story is that is the action which we take that will bring us closer to the purpose we were designed for.

I was also reminded that, from my own dark and depressive experiences, I can be used to empower and equip others; but it takes the desire to not only want change but to hang on tight to it, grip it well and move forward with it every day.

This is my first Christine Caine book, one I picked up from a recommendation, and I am so glad that I did. Christine writes in an easy to read fashion, but I found it was her honesty and humbleness before God that captured me.

I do recommend this book as a great read, but be prepared to be challenged whilst also very encouraged to become someone who is UNDAUNTED!


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