"remove the stone"
One of my favorite plants/shrubs/flowers are hydrangeas, they are so pretty. I have a couple of pots that I keep them in,the other day I noticed they were growing but some branches were hardly giving and shoots. A few years ago I learned a technique on how to propagate plants, taking the branch closest to the ground, you dig a hole place the branch in it and put a stone or rock on top of it, the pressure helps the branch stay in place and develop deep roots, after a while new branches will emerge from this one.
This process reminded me of the death of Lazarus, after he died, he was buried, a stone was placed on his tomb, people thought Jesus had gotten there late and that there was nothing he could do. When Jesus arrived he order the stone to be removed after that he called Lazarus forth and out Lazarus came. I don't believe Lazarus came out of there the same, he was changed.
Life can have us thinking we are dying, problems, relationships, heartache and dissapoinment makes us unable to grow, give and receive anything and so that is when we must be buried. Parts of us must be buried so that new ones can rise or grow. When others are burying us, the Lord is nurturing us in his love. While people is placing a tombstone with judgement and rejection on us, the Lord is showering us with compassion and in the dark he is growing us deep roots of perseverance and after all that care he calls us forth.
When we find ourselves in seasons of loneliness, grief, or mourning just remember the Master Gardener, Jesus. He is planting us, he is growing us and calling us forth into a new identity and he is never late.