Thursday, April 5, 2012

Lessons learned from a garden!

For so many years of my life, I have LOVED the first flowers of spring- daffodils, tulips, even dandelions bring me joy.  Their bright vibrant colors and entrance into a grey brown world give energy and promise of more sun to come!

Now dandelions have never been a problem.  My huge yard covers with them as soon as the weather allows.  But in all my years of living in this house, with a huge yard that I could fill to my content, I have never taken the time to plant any of the daffodil or tulip bulbs in the fall, so that I can enjoy their beauty!

Until now!  Last fall, I determinedly bought up a couple of different kinds of bulbs, threw them in the ground and hoped that I would see some color this spring.  (Yes, there is a reason that I have not done a lot of yard work.  I'm not very good at it.)  But sure enough, earlier than expected because of the beautiful early spring we have had, those bulbs sprang up in spots of daffodil yellow and tulip shades of yellow, orange & pink.

In the middle of my very unkept flower bed (pictures don't lie) I have found GREAT JOY! I look for time to go to the window, or step outside to breathe the fresh air and behold their beauty.  What a gift they have been to a winter weary heart!

At the same time that I have been enjoying this first...I have been experiencing another.  It's an inward growth that is laboring to 'spring forward'!  It's been hard and I'm finding myself waffling between wanting to 'give up' and desperate to make it work this time.  It's part spiritual, a lot emotional, with a smack of physical, and it is taking all of me to work my way through it.

But my trips to the flowerbed have been speaking to my internal growing place.  I'm learning some valuable lessons.
     1. These bulbs were made to produce one thing. They are either daffodils or tulips.  They don't try to be something they are not.
     2. Their colors and size vary and even change as they grow and enjoy the sun's warmth and drink the rain's sweet juice.  But they remain daffodils and tulips.
     3. They don't produce all year long. Just for a season!  They will always be daffodils or tulips, but they sometimes look like a plain old ordinary bulb.

Now to a proficient gardener, I'm sure I have much to learn about the beauty of a bulb.  But to me, much of the time, I don't even notice they are in my garden.  Yet when the spring comes, when it's the right time- they are the shining stars of the garden plot.  They give life and hope and joy to my heart!

Hmmm! So many questions come to mind.
Why do I try to do so many things? at once?
What is my one thing that I was designed to do better than anyone else in my world?
Why do I work to look like something different than I am?
Why do I keep on doing and doing, when my whole being craves to rest? to take in? to lie dormant?
Why do I think I have to shine all the time?

I'm sensing deep inside this bulb of mine that something is happening!  It's not my time to SHINE yet!  But the growth that is inside is beginning to push it's way up through the cold, hard, bare ground.

This season reminds me of another 'in the ground' time.  As Jesus appeared to be an 'ordinary human'- not able to save himself on that cross.  Yet he waited!  He allowed the death to come!  He stayed! He let the death be 'official'. I've learned that the Jewish belief was that the spirit hung around a dead body for three days hoping to rejoin with it.  But on the 3rd day it waited no more!

Jesus waited!  He stayed! No one could dispute he was dead! But then, when the time was right, life bloomed again. He was dead no more!  He rose up from the ground and He could be seen.  Not to everyone at once. Not with pomp and circumstance. But just to a couple, then a few more and then a few more! He was WHO He was supposed to be WHEN He supposed to be. HE brought LIFE to all because of it! Wow!

I feel like I've been in the ground- probably for 3 years just after Leisha died. I feel like the last few months, maybe more like the last 3 years, something has been stirring within me; something has begun the growing process.   I'm beginning to see a 'bit of green growth' pushing through the soil. It's not my turn to bloom yet!  But I want to be ready!  I will do the hard work!  I will wait and stay!  Lord, only you know who I truly am and what I am to be! Help me be patient! Help me be ready for my moment to shine as you made me too! Help me be part of helping others find your LIFE that you offer!

How about you?  What lessons are you learning from your garden?  What is growing in your flowerbed? Leave a comment to tell me what kind of bulb your are.  I'd love to hear!

Come on Sunshine! Hello rain! Let's get this garden growing! Easter is coming!


  1. Well, I am a gardener and I have a journal of things learned in the garden! One lesson is this lesson of what's occurring underneath the surface of the soil. Sometimes I see only one or two flowers and then the next season they come up everywhere. All along the roots have been spreading outward and at the right moment they spring up in mass. (This can be good (flowers) or bad (weeds)) Another thing is that God loves variety. Just look at creation. He has shown me that we do not all grow in the same conditions. Some need full sun to flourish and others would die in those conditions. This was when I was thinking on unity in The Church, how different denominations can be, but all have one purpose of beautification and producing fruit, it just does it in different environments. Plant where you will thrive and glorify Him. And don't condemn others for not growing in the same conditions you do. A sunflower doesn't tell the impatiens that it's not a flower because it won't grow and thrive in the full sun (it would wither and die) or vice versa.
    well, there a a couple of the lessons. Can't wait to get out there and hear from Him some more!

    1. Kim! Thanks for sharing your 'lesson'! I love the concept of the flowers 'springing up in mass'! And with great variety! Love those days when we as a huge variety of people flowers spring up in mass! If only we don't judge each other to death trying to get the others to look like us!
      Good lessons!