How to Bloom Where You Are Planted

August 2018
Jeremiah Krieger
Acts 28:30:31
Acts 28:30 He lived there two whole years at his own expense, and welcomed all who came to him, 31 proclaiming the kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ with all boldness and without hindrance.
Ever since I can remember, I have had struggled with the defiance of a strong will that grips me when God puts me into circumstances outside of my control. I have always liked to be in control since I was a young child. So, when I am put in situations that I am uncomfortable with, sometimes I try to resist. This isn’t the best way to live. God’s word shows us a better way.
The Apostle Paul was minding his own business serving God. God had radically converted Paul. He had gone on three missionary journeys (Acts 13, 16 & 19). His life was fully devoted to Christ. But God called him to another journey that wasn’t pleasant.
In Acts 20, Paul senses God’s call to go to Jerusalem. Jerusalem was a place where the Apostle Paul knew he would be persecuted. God was leading him into an extremely dangerous situation, and eventually this journey would cause him to be imprisoned in Rome.
The book of Acts strangely ends abruptly with Paul living in Rome on house arrest. He lived in Rome at his own expense. That clearly wasn’t fair. Should his accusers have paid his tab? Not only was he inconvenienced by his accusers, but he had to pay his own way through.
Sometimes life isn’t fair. Not only does the sin of others affect you, but you end up picking up tabs in life that you should not. This happened to Paul.
Even though Paul’s journey took a strange twist, landing him in an unfamiliar place and costing him more than his fair share. But the way that Paul lived during his two years in Rome is remarkable. He bloomed where he was planted.
Acts 28:30-31 records that while Paul lived in Rome, he welcomed all who came to him, proclaimed the kingdom of God and taught about the Lord Jesus with confidence. Paul didn’t let his circumstances shake his attitude. Instead, he used it as soil to grow and bring blessing to others.
When God leads us into territories in life we never wanted to go, he is planting us exactly where he wants us to grow. We can either resist or trust. When we trust God, it will bring blessing to our life and to the lives of others.
To bloom where you are planted requires sacrifice. Paul lived at his own expense. Sacrifices we pay are ultimately for the glory of God and even for our good. Instead of complaining, it is better to work through frustrations and learn to praise God.
Second, once we learn to accept our circumstance from God, our attitude will change. Just like a seed takes root in soil, our attitude will become welcoming. It will transform from being inwardly focused and turn outward to others. Challenging times in life are God’s opportunities for us to serve others.
Paul served others by opening his life up to all who came to him so that he would bear the fruit of the Gospel in his life.
In order to bloom where we are planted, we have to be convinced that God is working for our good in the situations he plants us (Romans 8:28). We have to learn to see our life as not our own. Instead, we find that we are agents to share the Good News that Christ’s Kingdom has come, and there is nothing more exciting in life than that!
If you have found yourself in circumstances that are difficult to appreciate, trust God through the journey. It is an opportunity to grow; an opportunity for new life to take root in yourself and to produce fruit to encourage others. Instead of resisting these moments, let’s learn to bloom where we are planted instead of resisting or fighting for control.
In Christ,
Pastor Jeremiah