I’ve always thought that the pastors and Bible teachers who have the best illustrations are either parents or gardeners with a knack for drawing spiritual principles from everyday situations. They get to tenderly nurture and vigilantly care for something and watch it grow. As I’ve never been either a parent or a gardener, I’m in need of some fresh material.
It looks like I may be getting my wish. Steve and I feel like we’re farmers now that we have almost an acre of land to care for. Last weekend, Steve went to an all-day seminar on lawn care and we’ve been collecting tons of tips from neighbors. We’ve practically bought out our local hardware store with everything we need to fertilize, prune, weed, and plant. (And of course, I can’t do all that without my new matching garden gloves, kneeling pad, and garden shoes.)
We’ve learned how the branches of our trees struggle to reach out to the light and how they can’t thrive apart from the light. About our need to cut away the dying and unproductive parts so the healthy buds will bloom. About the weeds, some ugly and some not so, but all with the purpose of choking out the seed and, therefore, all needing to be pulled. About the earth going through its seasons where everything appears to be dead but is actually just dormant. The new life, safely biding its time in secret where no eye can see, can’t wait to show off its beauty and make the world smile back. The joy of seeing the new sprouts break out of their winter grave makes me forget the callouses on my hands and the ache in my back (well, sort of). And makes me glad that, finally, I have a garden to tend.