September 11, 2014

My Garden... Myself...

Today's post is brought to you by Grow Write Guild prompt #30.


Our gardens reflect who we are, what we need, and what we like. 
What does my garden say about me?

This time of year the garden is in huge transition and is often overgrown.  It is a symbol of neglect on my part these days.  This year it is a little worse due to our August that exploded with change.  As I stood outside looking at things this morning I determined a plan to get it back under control.  My garden is screaming that I am undisciplined, unorganized, and overwhelmed right now.  I suspect it is due to our recent release of our oldest into his new life and the return of school schedules.  I still don't have a handle on it all and am slow to get there this year due to the distractions of change.  I have not even taken much time to sit in my Adirondack chair lately and it is in desperate need of repair and new paint, too.

As a gardener I take the "eating the Elephant on bite at a time" approach.  I cannot just clear it all in one day.  With arthritis I have to take small sections each day until it is under control again.

I have been slack in planting for the fall this year.  I am grateful that we have a longer growing season and that I can still get a few things in the ground between now and the end of September and enjoy the bounty into the holiday season.  Our first freeze usually happens around November 15th so there are about two more months of real growing left and some of the crops I will plant will survive mild freezes.

We are hoping to get some work done this weekend and then I can dig and plant next week.  I have been waiting on the tomatillos to get ripe and will be pulling the rest of the carrots up.  I am pulling yellow squash plants out and leaving one zucchini plant that is still beautiful and some tomato and pepper plants that will continue to give us fruit.  The tomato plants have finally decided it is cool enough to give us fruit again.  

To be really honest we just had no huge success this year due to the high temps in May, June and July.  When it sits just around 100 every day for 8-10 weeks things just don't thrive.  My herbs that have been in the shade have really flourished but not much else.  We got one cantaloupe and one cucumber all summer and maybe a handful of yellow squash and zucchini.  I spent the whole summer fighting off bugs and kept them at bay very well and still... nothing.

I think seasons of life are that way.  I think we spend a lot of time fighting the bugs and then just hang on with hope to see any harvest.  Sometimes reaping is not possible immediately... sometimes we just keep it alive and hope to see fruit at some point.  Some years are much more productive than others.  In the meantime, I mend things around the yard, clear the rubble and debris and plan and prepare for the next season.  I take time to learn what I can about what went wrong... what needs to be different... what needs to go away and what needs to stay.  See any spiritual principles here?  LOL  I do!

And so it is with the season I am in.... some days are hard... they are cluttered and disorganized and in utter disarray.
The truth of gardening is like the truth of faith and sharing that faith... you plant... you water... and you wait.  God brings the increase in both literal and spiritual gardening.  In 1 Corinthians 3 we see Paul use a garden illustration with farmers to show how faith is shared and grows.  Paul said that he planted and Apollo came along and watered and then the results were completely God's doing... He brings the increase!
This requires trust, obedience and hope from us.
Faith is built on hope and so is planting a garden. 
(which is why the illustration was used to teach them)
If I did not have hope I would never plant anything again... 
(nor would I share Christ with others)

but I do... 

and I plant... 

and I water... 

and I watch the little tender plants begin and then one day... 

there is fruit.  

It is as God intended.  
I obey and He makes the miracle happen.
I have learned great lessons of faith from gardening.

It is all a miracle and as I watch and wait I get to see amazing things... little flowers emerge... and vines and leaves and stalks... butterflies and hummingbirds and bees show up and fulfill their role.  
Rain falls and green things grow.  

It is all amazing.  

It slows me and focuses me to garden.  The process of cleaning and clearing the mess that is living in my garden right now will be healing and there will be a sense of great accomplishment when I stand back and see the tended garden.  It will bring a blank slate that can be painted upon again to give us a new picture... a new work of art that is never like the one before it.

So, in a very literal way the biggest thing my garden says about me is that I have hope.... I have faith... I believe if I plant and water and tend to the garden... God will bring the increase and He always does in some way whether it be food, flowers, trees, or grass (or in a spiritual garden through the eventual salvation of a fellow human as we plant spiritual seeds).  It always changes me through the process of both literal and spiritual gardening.  The miracle comes and I marvel like a little child each time it does.

What does your garden say about you?

1 comment:

  1. yes seasons, a very appropriate talking point for me at the moment, many changes, I believe for the better in the long run. anyway my garden at the moment is in early spring, new growth, cuttings that I planted in late winter are now starting to bloom, looking forward to some colour.