Lord, make us turn to you; let us see your face and we shall be saved. Once again, O LORD of hosts, look down from heaven, and see; Take care of this vine, and protect what your right hand has planted the son of man whom you yourself made strong. (PSALM 80:2AC AND 3B, 15-16, 18-19)
Yes, I'm the "crazy plant" coworker. I just counted and I have five plants in my cubicle â€¦ and two in the cubicle next to me! They just make me happy. I love watching new vines take root and grow and fill out. The faster the plant grows the better - no cacti at my desk! Oftentimes what happens when I buy a new plant is that it tends to wilt, weaken and just about die on me, then I really get energized and it is my goal to revive that baby. Usually it works and gets stronger and stronger and then we live in happy harmony for ever after (until I go on vacation and my coworkers kill it).
When I read this passage I am reminded that we are the vines of the Lord. He has planted us here on earth to learn to follow Him. Most of us wilt and wither some along the way as sin and temptation and the world envelopes us with its ways. It's a struggle we face to find our own path back to God and his word. Some paths are so hard that people can't find their way without a lot of help, and if the help doesn't come they may be lost forever. We may think we ourselves are right with God, but are we doing enough to help our brothers? Could we do more to nourish their growth? The holidays can be a very difficult time for people, and I don't mean shopping and baking and parties. I'm talking about loneliness, despair and abandonment.
Can you find someone that needs a hug and some kind words to encourage them? We all have gifts to share with others that are looking for hope this season.