Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Gardening Lessons

Yesterday I helped my wife to pot four small patio blueberry bushes that we ordered in the mail. That is the closest that I have been able to come to gardening work this year.

Gardening is a great hobby. It is time consuming, but very rewarding.

Gardening is much more than digging a small hole, throwing in a few seeds, and waiting for them to grow. Although my four-year-old son’s concept is pretty close to that.

The soil must be prepared. Weeds pulled and rocks removed. In some cases, pH checked and fertilizers added. Once the seeds are sown, they must be diligently watered so that they are able to germinate. The young plants must be nurtured to maturity. Weeds that choke out the young plants must continually be removed. The soil must be kept moist. The plants must be checked for disease and insects. The young plants must be given an environment in which they will survive and thrive by bearing much fruit. Or vegetables.

The harvest is a direct result of the hard work that is put in at the beginning and throughout the growth process. You reap what you sow. There is something special about harvesting a crop that you have sown and nurtured with your own two hands. The vegetables seem to taste better. The fruits are sweeter.

I think that part of the thrill of gardening is that it is a tiny taste of the thrill of creation.

Being created in the image of God, I believe that we enjoy creating things. While we do not have God’s ability to breathe things into existence, to create things ex nihilo, out of nothing, we do have the ability to take what exists and make it into something new.

In gardening, we simply help the process along as a seed becomes a mature, fruit-bearing plant. But in writing, we take words and create novels. In music, we take notes and create symphonies. In art, we take pigments and create beautiful paintings.

The creative process can be, if we allow it to be, a response to our encounter with God. It can be, therefore, an act of worship.

As I plant a flower, write a poem or a song, build a birdhouse, or carve a bird from a piece of basswood, I can be reminded of the God who created all things. And I can praise Him for His mighty works. And I can thank Him for including me.

1 comment:

John Family Blessings said...

Whew, nice site! Been a long time reading blogs. I was so caught up arranging a family blessings convention for my church. I’m glad to have a good read.