As I mentioned recently, Phil has been ordering seeds. A box of seeds just came in the mail.
This is a sign of hope!
We still have snow on the ground, and I was waiting to take a picture of our first blooms of 2018. I guess I will have to continue waiting. As you can see from the above picture, our hellebores, our earliest bloomer, have yet to open up. Some folks call these flowers Lenten Roses. Winter has not loosened its grip here!
My hellebores were given me by a dear friend, Lois, and I think of her each time I see them. These plants re-seed themselves and spread, so before long there is a lovely group of these hardy, long lasting bloomers.
Seeds are a metaphor for hope. When seeds are planted, there is no guarantee that a plant will grow. There are many variables that influence the outcome.
- sun, full sun for some plants, shade for others
- water, not too much, not too little
- soil, the right composition for various plants
- critters! – (groundhogs have gotten their fill of tender bean plants too many times in our garden)
- temperature – a late freeze, intense heat
All these factors determine the outcome of planting seeds. Yet isn’t is glorious when the right conditions all come together at the right time?
We have a bountiful harvest!
When these factors don’t align, we need to make changes to obtain a harvest. It may mean planting in a different location, supplementing with additional water, guarding tender sprouts from predators, or covering plants to protect from frost.
It may mean changing the type of seeds we plant. We take the necessary steps so our hard work gardening doesn’t go to waste.
This is much the same in our spiritual lives.
We may go through a time spiritually where we don’t “harvest” any spiritual fruit. We lack love, joy, peace, patience, and the other fruit of the Spirit. We may be doing all the things we have always done, yet we aren’t getting the same results.
Psalm 51: 10-13 says –
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me away from Your presence,
And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of Your salvation,
And uphold me by Your generous Spirit.
13 Then I will teach transgressors Your ways,
And sinners shall be converted to You.
These verses give me hope!
It may be time for a change. Just as doing the same things in our garden year after year doesn’t produce the same results, doing the same activities spiritually doesn’t insure the same peace, joy, or patience.
My friend Patti has walked with God for many years, and recently began sharing God’s Word in a local jail ministry. “I get so much from these ladies every time I go.” she told me today. “They have really had hard lives and to see the way God is working in them blesses and challenges me.”
Patti is planting seeds of change in these ladies’ lives, and it is changing her as well.
I’m praying that God will show me what I need to change so that I can continue to bear fruit – the fruit of the Spirit.
In My Garden with God – 4