I have a patch of grass in my front yard that has perplexed me for years. Every spring it flourishes more quickly than the rest of the lawn; Two days after a mow that area needs to be mowed again! I suspect a long-lost payload of fertilizer might lay just under the turf because healthy things grow. This growth means I need to change my mowing schedule because growing things always bring change.

Now the biggest challenge for this patch of lawn typically happens every Summer. Right now the patch has not only slowed down but it has turned yellow and crispy, even after heroic efforts to save it. I see the painful pattern repeat annually, only to revive and come back strong again in the spring.

The challenge of growth, change, and adjustment was greater than my knowledge and experience. I had to respond to the challenge in a new way, but I wasn’t sure how… until the arrival of a light bulb moment and fresh insight.

During a summer visit, my sister asked to take a picture in our front yard. As we turned to face the camera, she said, “Step back, the light is better behind you.” We stepped back three strides and she was right, the sun was like a spotlight, providing picture-perfect lighting. Looking at the picture I was shocked to discover that we had been standing directly on the infamous yellow lawn spot.

How was the sun brighter in that spot than anywhere else on my lawn? We discovered that the sun in that spot was being reflected and magnified from our across-the-street neighbor’s upper window. That reflection is a huge benefit during the wet season, but during the heat, it becomes a tremendous challenge. And the pattern of mowing more and watering less in the spring moves to mowing less and investing in remedies in the summer.

This natural cycle of enlightenment and adjustment is a kind parable for our spiritual life cycle.

Healthy things grow,
Growing things change,
Change challenges us,
Challenges drive us to Jesus,
Jesus makes us healthy,
and healthy things again begin to grow.

The question really comes down to where we look when the changes of life challenge us. Do we look at what we wish we had, and grow new gripes? Do we look at what we’ve lost and become bitter? Do we distract ourselves with what we’ve got and grow complacent? Or will we take our frustrations and fears to Jesus and engage in the cycle of growth…looking to our Savior for insight and perspective, and making adjustments to our living in order to maintain spiritual health and vitality.

We’ve crossed the mid-point of summer, and the Fall is on the way. At BCC we’re preparing for the challenges and changes that growth brings us: We’re refreshing our public spaces to welcome new attenders and preparing to host our friends at Valor Christian School. We’re inviting faithful people to lead new Rooted and Home Community groups and preparing Fall teaching series and Labs. And in it all, we’re looking to Jesus for His wisdom and strength because we know that this season of growth will bring new challenges that will require adjustments. Staying close to Him, focusing on Him, and obeying His voice means that when the dust settles we will be made strong and healthy by the opportunities He offers…no matter how hot it gets.

Hebrews 12:1a-2 (NLT)
“…And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. 2 We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.[a Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.”

Jon Furman
Lead Pastor