My boys (aged five and seven) were recently given a kit for growing their own plant. It contained cotton wool and mung bean seeds, and they received a spray bottle of water. After moistening the wool and seeds, they were told to leave it for a few days. After a week my son became frustrated because no plant appeared. I reminded him to keep adding water. Within a couple more days of doing that, we started to see a little plant appear:


Amidst the muck and the mould something beautiful arose.

It’s been an emotional week for my husband and I. On Friday we received the results of diagnostic tests that revealed our seven-year-old has Autism Spectrum Disorder. We’ve been looking for answers for years, and now we have a name for the behavior we’ve seen. His struggles are, and will continue to be, different to many of the people around him. And it breaks our heart.

But we know beauty will grow out of the darkness. Right now I can’t see very far ahead. And when I try, it makes me fearful. But I hold onto Jesus. He knows the beginning from the end – the mung-bean seed from the budding plant. So I hold his hand tightly and trust.

“He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted… to comfort all who mourn… to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.” (Isaiah 61)