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Jan Rogers From My Mountains

”Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, ‘Why could we not cast it out?’ And He said to them, ‘Because of the littleness of your faith; for truly I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you shall say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it shall move; and nothing shall be impossible to you.’”

Matt. 17:19-20

It’s been a beautiful spring, hasn’t it? Even the drive home from town has taken on a special delight. One of my favorite spots is the Impressionist view along Jones Bridge road. Redbuds dot this landscape with smudges of pink tucked in amongst powdered-lavender wisteria vines which are winding their way around and through ivy-covered trees as red flecks of tulips are scattered about. If it wasn’t so fresh and real it might be a Renoir painting. Not long after this breathtaking picture is a lawn with hundreds of dandelions smattered about. It made me think of a special memory of my Granddaughter, Susie, when she was 5.

Like Grandma, Susie loved the garden, and she was particularly fond of all things wild and yellow. She would run to pick every dandelion she saw no matter where it was and thinks dandelions and wild mustard flowers are the most wonderful flowers there are. In fact, when I was doing my first spring weeding in the garden, I discovered a wild mustard plant that had one stalk just about to bloom. I dug it up and put it in a pot for her so she could grow her very own mustard flower on her windowsill.

Funny, isn’t it? Most gardeners see dandelions and mustard as weeds, while Susie at 5-years-old, saw them as beautiful flowers.

I wonder how different the world would be if we learned to look at life and other people through those same filters? How would it be different if we could learn to look at others and see them as God sees them whether saved or lost? Would marriages survive better if husbands and wives could see each other that way? What about friendships? What about relationships within the church where, as my dearly departed friend, Layne Livingston, used to say, “Satan is working like a microwave, from the inside out”? And, let’s take it one step further and see if that could even apply to seeing opportunities within our trials. The possibilities are endless. But, what does it take to have this view?

It takes faith.

Faith fuels friendship. Faith forgives. Faith feels for the forsaken. Faith feeds the hungry. Faith looks forward and doesn’t dwell in the past. And, faith causes us to come to Jesus seeing Him through the eyes of a child who sees a Father whose love is so great He can do no wrong; whose love secures us and who can do no wrong.

Jesus understood that kind of faith. See how He compared our faith to that of a mustard seed. It just takes that miniscule amount of faith to move the mountains of challenges in life and to see results. God’s plan for us involves the opening of so many opportunities; presents us with so many possibilities all when we allow ourselves to have the unwavering, unquestioning faith of a child. That’s not an easy thing sometimes because as adults we want answers to everything. We want everything to be tangible and fit into our own little “boxes’” the squares within which we build our understanding. But faith can tumble those boxes and break down barriers. And to think it only takes an amount as small as a mustard seed.

I wonder, precious ones, what changes we could make in the world if we, like Susie, saw every weed as a precious flower, claiming all things wild and yellow as our own; loving with such childlike abundance. Would the — could the — world be different? What amazing things I believe God could do with people such as this!

One Note: Susie’s name was changed for privacy

Jan Rogers is a local author and Bible Study teacher. She and her husband, Michael, moved to Greeneville in 1995 and live on a mini-farm in the Camp Creek area.

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