Today Jesus appeared to me in the form of a Mexican gardener.
We were working on landscaping at our newly acquired rental house, placing plants, digging holes, relocating bushes.
There with a crew to lay down sod, he watched from a distance. Suddenly he was beside us with his spade, digging into the soil around the bush we were transplanting, helping my husband get the right angle to get the root ball...then coming to where I was digging the new hole. He takes over, enlarging the hole, loosening the dirt, using his hands to get the shape just so before placing the roots in the ground, reminding me to water well as a transplant is like surgery and the bush is going to need some fluids.
I turn on the water and wet the soil around the base of the bushes before moving on to my next task.
Minutes later, the hose is on again, and I see the Mexican gardener soaking the bushes...I had not watered them enough, he said quietly. Remember the roots; they need lots of water after a move. I smiled my thanks and he returned to his task of preparing the ground for sod.
But he's watching us...not in a way that made me self-conscious...he was observing, letting us fumble with the soil and the planting, watching for where his assistance might be welcomed and needed.
The ground was riddled with buried roots of long gone trees and other foliage.... their presence no longer seen until the shovel stops hard in the dirt, jarring hands and arms and body. The sun is hot and high in the sky, so rather than fight to tear out or break through the roots, I figured I could work around them, planting the flowers in between the subterranean root system.
Next thing I know, my gardener is there, shovel in hand. He motions us aside and with a practiced hand he slams the spade down into the ground, slicing deep into the root. Slap, smack, thunk and just like that the root is broken in two. My husband starts to lift the shovel, but our friend stops him, observing with veteran eyes and finding the best way to remove this buried root system.
Three more whacks and he pulls up a gnarled ball of roots, thick shoots in all directions, easily pulled out after his expert spade work.
Emotional work is not unlike working in a garden. Until you start to dig, you don't know what lies underneath the surface. You may have removed the things easily seen from above, maybe chopped down a few trees, had the stumps drilled out, and pulled out a few bushes. But those roots, especially from things that have been there a long time, live on...not supporting a tree above the ground, but providing plenty of blocks and challenges anytime you try to plant something new there.
Many times we shy away from emotions because of this...we fear what lies below the surface and just try to plant around the obstacles. But then Jesus, who is waiting and watching, sees our readiness to be free. He comes and with quick, decisive movements, he severs the roots and pulls out the tangled mess that was in the way of the new growth. Then he kneels down and gently works the soil of our hearts, loosening the soil, enlarging the territory and clearing the space so the roots of the new growth can spread and expand and support a strong healthy plant.
This may feel scary. It may be painful. But those old emotional roots aren't doing you any favors, aren't producing any good fruit in your life, and are taking up space that is needed new fruit to be born in your life. New behaviors can't form correctly around old thought patterns. The old roots must first be exposed and removed in order for the new healthy feelings, thoughts, and behaviors to take root and grow unhindered.
In the Aroma Freedom Technique, I often invite my clients to invite the presence of Jesus into the process. The essential oils do a great job of helping to dissolve negative thoughts, feelings, and emotions; but there is nothing like the presence of Jesus to bring an expert hand at identifying and removing the exact thing that's hindering freedom. There's also nothing like the presence of Jesus to bring hope and healing as the body, mind, and soul release what has been hindering the abundant life He promises us.
Is there something you'd like to see grow in your life but you've hit some underground roadblocks you weren't expecting? I'd love to help you identify those things that are in your way and, if you're willing, we'll invite Jesus to expertly direct the root removal process so that you can experience new life and be all that He has created you to be. Go here to set up your appointment or contact me with any questions you have.