You've heard the saying, "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade" but I've kind of grown weary of that premise while dealing with my own dysfunctional, stuck-in-the-mud season of life. We've all had crappy seasons in our lives. You know the kind. Laying in bed, tear-streaked face, possibly eating Ben and Jerry's ice cream and pumping your fist to the heavens wondering, "Why me?"

I can't give you the answer to the Why but I can give you How I've handled this down-on-my-luck season (and, that's putting it mildly).

You see, one day, while literally trying to make fresh lemonade, the popular (aforementioned) saying popped into my head. It made me stop and think about my situation. I was literally making lemonade amidst one of the darkest seasons in my life. All of my problems felt like a heavy anvil placed squarely on my back; job loss, sickness, anxiety, insomnia, depression, IRS lien, teenager problems, husband job loss (and sickness), being sued, loss of a dear friendship, and ultimately, grief. It's not been fun, let me tell you.

But, I'm not one for wallowing in the mire. So, I picked up the lemon seeds that I had strained from the fresh lemon juice and held them in my hand. They were trash, after all. But something stopped me. The little seeds called out to me, they made me ponder a thought: "What if God has some bigger purpose for these trials than I could ever imagine? What if He wants me to do something bigger than make lemonade with the lemons life had handed me? But, what?"

Then, the answer popped into my head: "Grow a lemon tree."

And, so, I washed the little seeds and went searching online for how to grow a lemon tree out of seeds. Trust me, I've never done anything like this before.



The journey begin for the little seeds. I washed them and placed them in a small baggie, waiting for them to germinate. Boy, does that take patience. It took weeks...and weeks...and weeks to even see any progress (Did I mention I'm super impatient?). Finally, a small sprout burst forth. You'd of thought I had won a million dollars! I screamed out loud and ran to tell my husband (and anyone else who'd listen to me).

Then, I waited some more.

Then, one day, seemingly overnight, all of the seeds had sprouted from the small baggie they were inside. They looked like they were saying, "Let us out of here! We've got to grow!" So, I removed them from the safety and security of the baggie and planted them together in a small planter.



Again, I had to place them in darkness and mud. They probably got scared, and wondered what in the world is this lady doing to us? Haven't we proven we can grow and do great things? Why is she sticking us in this scary, dark, abyss.

And, then I waited again. Believing and hoping in what those little seeds could become.

Then, on a beautiful Spring day, after a few weeks of waiting, one of the seeds poked it's head out from the dirt. I swear, I could almost hear him speaking to the other seeds, "I can see the light! It's this way...hurry!"



I walked over to them and encouraged them. I talked kindly to them and I watched their progress, but other than watering them and giving them sunshine, I coudln't grow for them. They had to do that by themselves.

This is what I now have:



They are still growing, and so am I. 

Like the little seeds, I wondered why I couldn't stay in my safe, known environment, living a life that I loved. Why did I need to change or go through these trials? Wasn't I perfect where I was? I thought so. But, God had different plans for me. He placed me inside a small incubator and germinated me, just like the seeds. I had to crack, break, and ultimately discard the shell of my former life 
and become something new.

Something better. 

He see's my true potential, and though I loved life as a little seedling, truly, God saw the beautiful Lemon Tree I could become.