When I was CEO of a plant corporation, I enjoyed educating groups of people on the how-to’s of different indoor plants. One of the questions I got most was why are two plants the same except one of them is variegated? They meant one plant was all green and one was a combination of green/white or green/yellow.
Variegated plants are an interesting topic. Most variegated plants are chimeras, meaning that have more than one tissue type due to a mutation. Leaves with yellow or green margins have cells in those areas that lack chlorophyll. (Flowers – especially tulips – in the 1600s had streaks caused by a virus infection. They were weakened plants.)
Even today, a variegated ivy must have access to higher light than the non-variegated to look (and be) as healthy as the all-green twin.
This has caused me to think about my spiritual life. Is my character variegated by weaknesses that will prevent me from being the woman God created me to be?
As I do a serious evaluation of myself, I wonder:
Isn’t fear a variegation of my character? Didn’t God say, “Do not fear”? I think so. I remember reading in Revelation 21:8
>But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. >
Whoa! To be included in the group with abominable, murderers, whoremongers, sorcerers, liars, and idolaters is pretty serious lumping! God must view fear and unbelief as very serious sins. I know, from experience, they are definitely character defects for a Christian who says she believes God’s Word!
I think fear must be a slap-in-the-face of God. It’s like screaming at Him, “You’re nothing but a liar!” when I allow fear to reside in my mind, will, thoughts, and emotions. Why even read His Word – all of the promises He made in both the Old Testament and the New Testament – if I am going to give in to fear? Jesus, Himself, kept admonishing His disciples not to fear.
So, since I do have a choice, I choose to be a dark green Christian instead of one weakened by the virus of fear.
I believe, Lord. Forgive my unbelief.
(c) 2009 April Lorier
(1 John 4:18) There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.