Monday, August 11, 2014

Lessons From My Garden


I learn a lot of spiritual lessons from my garden.

One time, in the spring, I asked my husband what he thought about our flowerbed. "Well, it looks better than it did last year," he told me.  I was hoping for more than that, but what he said got me to thinking.  

My garden isn't what it could be, what it will be. (I still have a lot to learn about caring, pruning, controlling pests, and fertilizing.) But when you consider what my garden looked like when we moved in several years ago...

it is easy to see that every little bit of work I have ever done out there, even if it was just wedding, really has made a difference.

My garden is not the same garden it once was and even if I don't lift another finger to care for it this season, it will never be the same garden again because of everything that has been done up to this point.

It's not the prettiest garden in the world, but at this point, the flowers, though they aren't extravagant, have taken over most of the space and it's actually quite hard for any weeds to get the advantage. 

A few years ago, I planted several seed packs of Black-Eyed-Susans. A few years later, I still didn't have very many Black-Eyed-Susans in my garden.  There was no real evidence that the seeds were ever going to thrive in all the places where I had planted them.  Every time I passed a garden, field, or roadside with Black-Eyed-Susans back then, I was reminded of what I didn't have in my garden. But now, as you can see above, this year my garden is filled with Black-Eyed-Susans!  This alone really helps to build my faith!

I was just given a few Rose of Sharon seedlings for my garden. They are nothing to look at yet.  But in time, from experience, I know they will grow. Like the Rose of Sharon I hope I will have in a my garden in a few years, I want new virtues in my life, in the garden of my soul.  So I am looking to God, planting the seeds of those virtues, practicing them, praying, seeking Him.  Will those virtues ever take root?  A still small voice tells me, "Yes. You will always harvest what you plant."  Galatians 6:7

Always. 

Consider my flower bed when we first moved into this house. We may come to God like that, with a barren landscape, ground filled with weeds. (We all have weeds. Even healthy gardens need to be weeded constantly.) But He is the master gardener.

If we keep coming back to Him daily and we let Him do His simple work in our lives, little by little, the way He does His great work, we will find that season after season, portion after portion of our lives have been changed and we aren't the same person. And praise God, we will never be the same person again.

By the grace of God, before we know it, we will look around and realize that our entire life is definitely under God's good influence, careful attention, and tender care.   That is glorious place to exist.


  

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