"Time to Grow"

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By: Sarah Rupp
Age 17

**Sarah is one of our contest winners who submitted this devotion and won a full scholarship to this year’s She Speaks Conference Next Generation Track.

John 15:5, "Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing." (NLT)


The Sprout burrowed in her dark, small home, talking to her neighbors through the dirt that separated, about life after they grew into the world. Truthfully, Sprout wasn’t so keen on leaving her safe and comfortable hole. She heard bad things about the world, like violent, blowing wind, pouring, heavy rain, and choking weeds that target little sprouts like her.

Day after day, Sprout stayed in her home, bored, but comfortable. On this particular day, she was extremely bored. Sprout called to her neighbors, but they didn’t answer. “Hello?” She knocked on the walls and called again, but still no answer. Where could they be? Laughter rang out, sounding like it was coming from above her.

They were outside in the scary world! “There’s no way I’m going out there!” she told herself.

Days passed and laughter still sounded, everyday more mature. “What’s going on out there?” Sprout began to wonder.

“Come out!” called her friends. “It’s great up here!”

“No!” Sprout protested. “I won’t come out!”

“Growing up feels good, Sprout!”

Sprout didn’t want to grow up. She curled up and went to sleep.

“Little Sprout,” a gentle voice woke her from her nap.

“Who’s there?” she said to the unrecognizable voice.

“It’s me, the Sun,” he replied. “You should come out, so you can grow close to me like the other plants.”

“But I don’t want to grow!” She said. “Can’t anyone leave me alone?”

“Your purpose is to grow and produce fruit to share with the people of the world. How are you going to do that from in here?”

“What if I don’t want to? What if I want to stay here where it’s safe?”

Sprout waited for the Sun to respond, but he said nothing. “Sun?”

A warmth came above her and attracted her to the top of her hole. “Come on, Sprout.” said Sun. “Grow toward me.”

Sprout felt the warmth –a lovely feeling – and pushed up through the soil.

But the soil was harder than she’d expected, and just before she burst through the top, she stopped, panting and out of breath. “I can’t do it, Sun,” Sprout said between gasps, “I can’t break though.”

The warmth encased her, as if in a hug. “I love you, my little Sprout.”

Sprout smiled and took a deep breath. With a new burst of confidence, she pushed one last time and saw glorious brightness. A soft breeze blew, not like the cruel wind she’d heard about. She looked up at the sky, and it was not storm clouds that covered, but blue skies and the Sun smiling down at her.

“Well done, my child.” He said. “I’m so proud of you.”

“Sprout!” called her friends. “You grew!”

“Yes, I did!” She said, beaming as bright as the Sun above her. “But is it true what they say, about the wind, the storms, and the weeds?”

“It is true,” they replied. “But don’t be afraid, because surviving those things helps us grow close to the Sun.”

Prayer:


Dear Lord, release me from the fear of stepping outside my comfort zone. I want to serve You with my life. Help me to grow closer to You and use the obstacles in my life to do so. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Related Resources:

The One Year Devos for Teens, by Susie Shellenberger

Think About It:


How can I move past the fear of stepping out of my comfort zone so I can serve God?

How can I use the “storms” and “weeds” in my life to help me grow closer to God?

Live It:

Try doing little things today that take you out of your comfort zone, whether it’s talking to the shy new girl, sharing a Bible verse with a non-Christian friend, or standing up for what you believe. God is with you; you can do it!

Power Verses:

Jeremiah 29:11-12, “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the Lord. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen.’” (NLT)

Exodus 4:10-12, “But Moses pleaded with the Lord, ‘O Lord, I’m not very good with words. I never have been, and I’m not now, even though you have spoken to me. I get tongue-tied, and my words get tangled.’ Then the Lord asked Moses, ‘Who makes a person’s mouth? Who decides whether people speak or do not speak, hear or do not hear, see or do not see? Is it not I, the Lord? Now go! I will be with you as you speak, and I will instruct you in what to say.’” (NLT)


© 2009 by Sarah Rupp. All rights reserved.
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Tell Us About It:

How have you grown in your faith by stepping outside your comfort zone?
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4 Comments:

Blogger 6blessings said...

Thanks for the devotion. Loved the analogy! Especially how you put serving God into small, attainable steps. Very applicable!

Anonymous Shannon Primicerio said...

Great devotion, Sarah! It's practical and easy to understand. No matter where any of us are at in our walks with the Lord we can all afford to grow :)

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had to step out of my comfort zone when I switched schools(from a private Christian school w/ 70 kids in K-12 to a middle school with hundreds of kids in my grade alone.) It was extremely hard and trying, but because of it I have grown stronger in my faith and I find it easier to hear God and obey His commands. And, that alone was worth everything. And, I know it's still hard, but I also know this is just a season and it'll soon pass. I just have to wait on Him and listen with all my heart to His Words and all will be okay in the end.

Thank you for this amazing devo Sarah! It really put things in perspective for me and I appreciate that! Thanks!

~Katie

Anonymous Marina said...

How very lovely!

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