Answers In Love

Winning at Life God's Way

Have You Seen God in the Garden?

Two weeks ago my husband and I visited our local garden center and loaded our cart with soil enhancers, seed packets and starter plants. My heart smiled as we prepared to plant our summer vegetable garden.

My husband’s heart didn’t soar in the same way. He looked at our store receipt and said, “I can’t believe what we spent on the stupid garden.”

Don’t get the wrong impression. Underneath my husband likes our garden. He works hard with me to prepare, plant and maintain the garden all summer. He enjoys checking it out after work to look for new bounty hiding beneath flourishes of green leaves.

Charlie spoke from a pragmatic point of view. We don’t garden very seriously so we usually spend more money planting our garden than we save on our produce bill at the store.

I don’t mind losing a little money on our garden because it provides so many other kinds of value. Gardening is fun, challenging, therapeutic and provides fresh organic table fare. Best of all it lets me see God.

Seeing God in the Garden

If you get your hands dirty trying to grow something God will show you these things about Himself:

God’s ways are mysterious

How does He do it? We plant a kernel of corn and get a six-foot stalk bearing more corn. Who can explain it? Science can describe the mechanisms of reproduction but can’t explain life or make it happen.

Life and reproduction are miracles. God’s ways are higher than ours (Isaiah 55:8-9).

He supplies every need

Our loving God provides everything we need to succeed in the garden. He gives us abilities, earth, seed, sun, rain, natural fertilizers and beneficial bugs.

God knows our needs and has each one covered (Phil 4:19; Ps 1:1-3). He wants us to succeed!

God gives generously

God goes beyond supplying our needs and gives bountifully. Invest one kernel of corn and get back a stalk bearing one or two ears with 640-1280 new kernels. What a deal!

A single apple seed can sprout a tree that produces up to 1000 apples every year for 50 years. A single flower seed can grow a bush that displays gorgeous blooms for a decade.

God gives a huge return on investments! Who can out give God? (Malachi 3:10).

He works in prepared hearts

IMG_2178The upper part of our hilly garden has rocky, dry soil. We plant there every year but don’t get much return. The lower part has softer, rock-free soil that holds moisture. That section welcomes seeds and produces well.

God can’t produce a beautiful life from a hard heart. We must keep our hearts soft and tender if we want Him to bless our lives (Dan 5:20; Matt 13:1-23).

God rewards work

Gardens require time, effort and money. We must purchase supplies, prepare soil, plant seeds, tend plants, pull weeds, fight pests and blight if we want a return. Rewards come when we do the work.

God wants us to work in His garden for His purposes. He richly blesses everyone who does (Luke 19:17; 1 Cor 9:23).

He cheers us on

Bad weather and mistakes cause garden failures. Charlie and I have suffered many dashed hopes for fresh zucchini and more. When things go wrong we accept what happened, try to learn something and plant again.

God knows we’re not perfect. When we fail He wants us to learn something and make a fresh start relying on His help.  Harvest comes to those who push forward (Gal 6:9).

Conclusion

What about you? Do you garden? If so what thoughts come to your mind as you toil in the soil? I’d love to know.

If you don’t garden I recommend it. If you lack space think about helping in a church or community garden that feeds the poor.

The Bible says the earth teaches those who speak to it (Job 12:7-10)? You can speak to the earth and learn much about God in your garden.

Dorothy Frances Gurney knew that when she observed:

“One is nearer God’s heart in the garden

than anywhere else on earth.”

dorothy-gurney-quote

 

 

 

 

About Cheryl Savageau

Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor

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