Along the Garden Path
by Laura James 

The path of life isn’t a smoothly paved lane lined with flowers. It’s more of a rugged trail with twists and turns, hills and valleys. Tree roots protrude from the stones, waiting to trip us up. In places, the stones are missing and puddles or even streams block our way. Yet there are blessed resting places where a shady tree and a comfy bench provide sweet respite beside blooming flowers. 

While one day we smell the fragrance of roses and touch their velvety petals, another day we are scraped with the prick of thorns. The rocky path of lost opportunities, broken relationships, and painful circumstances often prevent us from enjoying these intervals of rest along the way.  

We can choose to blame God for our hurts or thank Him for our many blessings. Yes, we all have blessings too. Every day we're alive and breathing is a gift from almighty God. Every sunrise, every sunset, every morsel of food, stitch of clothing, or shingle over our heads has been provided by God. When tempted to think we earned it by our own hard work, we need to think again. Even our ability to think, move, and work is God's doing. We have nothing without Him.

Besides all this, and despite our reluctance to trust Him, He even sacrificed His only son as payment for our sins. That's how much He loves us and wants to share heaven with us.

So when struggling with trusting God, remember this:

"Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone?
Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil,
know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will
your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him!"
Matthew 7:9-11 NIV

We need to trust Him enough to ask with the expectation -- the TRUST -- that He who knows all things and loves us unconditionally will certainly give us His best. Although we may not realize it at the time, or ever, God's best is better than all we think to ask. When we rest in the shade of His love, our path may not be smooth, but it overflows with flowers.

To find out how God exceeded my expectations, read my story, Lilacs for Laura.

God's Peace and Blessings,

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.”
Proverbs 3:5-6