Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Lesson from the Garden: Don't Let Go!

It probably sounds corny, but whenever I work in the garden, I find myself thanking God for the opportunity to nurture a tiny bit of His creation. And since it's hard (though not impossible) to be simultaneously thankful and depressed, it seemed like a good thing to do yesterday.

So I collected the crushed eggshells and coffee grounds I've been saving, and I dragged the hose across the lawn to the garden. I checked on each plant and gave each one a little bit of eggshell and coffee grounds. I adjusted branches so that the tomato cages would better support the growing plants. As I did that, my neighbors probably thought I was talking to the plants, but I was praying. After I finished with all of the plants, I picked up the hose nozzle to water them.

When I reached the third or fourth plant, the water stopped flowing. It didn't take long to realize why: I'd let go.

A second later I thought about how often we do that with God. Things seem to be going okay, we've got everything under control (ha), and we stop clinging to Him as tightly.  By doing that, we give up the only source of strength and grace and peace that we have.

You'd think that this would have been front and center in my mind, since I'd just been thinking about the Mark Schultz song "He Is," which includes these lines:
Even when it feels like there is no one holding me
Be still, my soul
He is
He is, indeed, but it's easy for me to forget that when I'm not also holding on to Him.  No one says it better than Jesus Himself:  "Remain in me, and I will remain in you.  No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me."

[One commentary on that passage says this (emphasis added):  "Remaining is not simply believing in him, though that is crucial, but includes being in union with him, sharing his thoughts, emotions, intentions and power. In a relationship both parties must be engaged. The divine must take the initiative and provide the means and the ability for the union to take place, but it cannot happen without the response of the disciple."]

I went outside to take care of the gardens, and God reminded me of something important.  What is He teaching you today?


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7 comments :

  1. What a beautiful message. Thanks for sharing.

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  2. Hi, I found your website on the list of the 50 Best Blogs for creative thinking. Congratulations. I'm always interested in creativity of all kind. Great site.

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  3. He taught me that he is working even when I don't see his work. Last fall I planted hollyhock seeds around the yard. I didn't really think they would grow and eventually forgot about them. Last weekend I was weeding and saw some weeds that looked unusual and vaguely familiar. I decided not to pull them until I figured out what they were and was delighted to discover that they were hollyhocks.

    It reminded me about how often I give problems to God and then forget about them Then I am completely surprised to discover the amazing ways He answers my prayer.

    P.S. I also realized that getting old has advantages! Being forgetful allows me to surprise myself. :-)

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  4. You gave me a shiver running down my back. So true, what a great lesson just what you needed hun. It's always nice to know he's thinking of us and showing himself to us and making us grow and become stronger!

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  5. I've been thinking about this a lot lately. "In a relationship both parties must be engaged."

    I read a blog by a woman whose religious creed is known for works verses grace. I wonder if she has a relationship.

    I listened to my MIL talk without walking. And I see how badly she needs that relationship.

    I read about a woman who does random acts of guerilla kindness. My first response was cool but then I thought about it and realized how it doesn't work out. The random act of kindness might give the person a temporary lift but it doesn't change their life the way it might if they know it was done by someone who knows them and cares about them on a more personal level.

    Christians are called to build relationships and dropping a note on the sidewalk that says 'someone thinks your special' is not building a relationship. Writing that note and mailing it to a person or stopping by and giving it to a neighbor is what God requires of us.

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  6. Great post! Its wonderful when we learn lessons from the everydayness of life!

    Thank you for stopping by my place today!! :)

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  7. Wow, that's a great thought. Glad you found my blog today, and glad I found yours!

    Jennifer @ The Farris Wheel

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