“What’s up, Stan?” I asked as I saw him with a big smile on his face.
“I was just thinking about a story my neighbor told me last night.”
“Fill me in,” I said.
“My neighbor has a five-year-old granddaughter,” Stan began. “It seems that last summer she wanted to grow some pumpkins for Halloween..”
“So my neighbor took her to the store and they bought some pumpkin seeds and some potting mix to plant them in.”
“They went home and did all that was necessary to get the seeds planted in a big pot on my neighbor’s patio.”
“Each day, his granddaughter would come over with anticipation to see if the seeds had sprouted.”
“Finally, after a few days, the plants began to peak through the soil. The granddaughter was delighted beyond words.”
“She instructed her grandfather to be sure to water the plants so there would be really big pumpkins in time for Halloween. That was his assignment,” Stan said as he could hardly contain his laugh.
“What makes the story so funny?” I asked.
“Well, it seems that my neighbor is not much of a gardener.”
“How so?” I asked.
“Well, after the seeds sprouted and the plants began to grow, they withered up and began to die. This was very disconcerting to both my neighbor and his granddaughter.”
“After all of the plants died, they decided to try again with some new seeds.”
“Same result,” Stan said. “Again the seeds sprouted and the plants died, even though my neighbor was watering them very diligently.”
“This is the kicker,” Stan said with a laugh. “My poor neighbor was using the same watering can he had used to mix up some weed killer. Hard for plants to grow when you are feeding them poison!” Stan said with a big laugh.
“Did he confess to his granddaughter?” I asked.
“Yeah, he did, and she decided that was the end of growing pumpkins with her grandfather.”
“When Halloween came, they went to the store and bought a pumpkin!”
Stan continued, “I think that story is really funny because I can relate it to every aspect of my life. If I am not careful what I use in ‘watering’ my relationships, and especially the one with God, all of those relationships will dry up, wither, and die just like the pumpkin plants.”
“Just as I have to be careful what watering can I am using, making sure it is a clean one, I have to be careful what I allow into my life so all of my relationships grow and flourish, especially with God.”
“There are all sorts of things just waiting to poison relationships. Choose to avoid them.”
Stan concluded, “And choose to let God do the watering in all of your relationships, for he is the One who will produce the growth.”
Neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but God who causes the growth. 1 Corinthians 3:7.
Prayer: Thank you that you know exactly what you want from every one of my relationships, especially my relationship with you. I open myself to receive all that you have for me. I ask for your help in nurturing each of my relationships for that you are honored and glorified. Amen.