Eleven-year-old boys are good for lots of things. The one who lives at my house likes to cook. He’s great at taking out the trash. He’s one of the best huggers I know. And he’s a dad-gum fantastic yard boy.

Which is why, a few weeks ago, after he mowed the lawn, he decided to take it a step further and fertilize the grass. He pulled the little fertilizer cart out of the garage, grabbed the bag of fertilizer, and poured it in. Then he painstakingly rolled the cart over the entire lawn, visions of the greenest yard on the block swelling his chest with pride. 

There was only one problem. The fertilizer he used? Uhm … not fertilizer.

It was weed and grass killer.

A few days later, my yard was a crispy brown mess. Yes it was.

Now, the boy felt so bad he didn’t know what to do. He apologized. He said he’d pay for new grass. He offered to do every chore in the house for weeks, to make up for his mistake.

But he didn’t need to worry. I wasn’t mad at him. How could I be? His intentions were good. He was being thoughtful and considerate, and he took the initiative to do something helpful. Besides that, there was a bright side. We wouldn’t have to mow that yard for weeks.

Although I felt certain my yard was a lost cause, I drug out the sprinkler and watered the brittle mass, in hopes of finding any sign of new life. Sure enough, within a few days, green sprouts popped up here and there. Within a week, the sprouts had turned to patches, and now, at least half my yard is green.

Sometimes my life feels like that dead yard. I have the best of intentions and do everything I know to make things strong and healthy and good. But in spite of all that, things go terribly wrong and all the green, all the hope and joy and zest turns dry and crunchy. At times like that, I wonder if I’ll ever see green again.

But when I look to God and let Him water my dry, withered spirit, pretty soon I see fresh sprouts pop up here and there. If I stay near Him and let Him pour out His spirit on my life, those sprouts will turn to patches, which will eventually spread into every part of my soul.

No matter how hopeless, how dead we may feel, our lives are never a lost cause. With God, all things are possible. And I’m so glad we serve a God who specializes in taking dead things and breathing new life into them.

Where God is, there is hope.

With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.Matthew 19:26

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