Tami Kiser is reminded in a literal way that growing where you are planted can produce the wonderful fruits of joy and peace.
Grow where you are planted has been one of those clichés that I’ve actually tried to live by my whole life. Even now, despite how much I hate cliches, I’ll find myself quoting this in my head. I remember hearing this saying in high school as a young woman embarking on my faith journey and thinking, “Yeah, that’s so cool. I’m always going to grow where I am planted.”
So here I was this spring, completely uprooted.
I moved out of my home in March as we all began our “shelter in place.” It was a whirlwind of a move as I hurried to grab what I needed and prepared to spend what I thought was going to be just a few weeks in my new home. (Actually it wasn’t just a new home, but a new adventure I’ve written about it before -- a new retreat center in the mountains of the Carolinas.
Even though this move was something we had been praying about for years, the final purchase of the property all came very quickly as everyone was racing against the Covid-19 clock. We wanted to start our quarantine time at our new place. By the time March was coming to a close, my family and I found ourselves in a new home beginning to put down our roots.
This past weekend, I had the chance to return to my old home which actually still houses two of my adult sons and a couple of renters. It was a little stressful to say the least, as my neglected home needed some TLC. Perhaps what was most stressful for me was my garden. It was a fenced-in jungle with a St. Anthony statue in the center. I cleared my way through to cut off some vines that were choking my blueberry bushes. I fought back tears. I felt so hurt that my garden was neglected. But wait: God has me someplace else now. What was that saying about gardens? Oh yeah, “grow where you are planted.”
And even though I am sad about my old garden, I know that this space could still someday be redeemed and grow again under someone else’s care. Maybe one of the renters will take pity and start it over again. Maybe one of my sons will. And it’s all OK. God has me in another spot, where lots of fruitful growing is taking place.
Reflecting on this, I had to laugh a little. What was I sad about? God in his loving and caring way has indeed given me so much in my new soil, quite literally even a bigger and better garden. The old cliche really is true. No matter where you are, continue to grow -- grow as a woman of God, eager to do his work. The Great Gardener will never abandon you. He will always lovingly tend and prune you. We just have to settle in and start to grow -- just like my new garden.
I made this video right before my return trip to my old home and overgrown garden. Ironically, it was about the very message I needed to hear. God often works that way.
So don’t forget to grow where you are planted, because God tenderly plants us where we are needed and where we can grow the best.
Copyright 2020 Tami Kiser
Images copyright 2020 Tami Kiser. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Tami Kiser is a wife, mother, teacher, author, and speaker. She runs a video production studio featuring Catholic speakers. These can be purchased or viewed on Formed. She also is the co-owner and host of a new Catholic Retreat and Cultural Center in the Carolina Mountains called Heart Ridge. She has taught everything from NFP, Zumba, cleaning toilets, Catholic crafting, the hula, bullet journaling, tap dancing, and liturgical living to Saxon Math 54 for the 10th time.