Wednesday, August 22, 2012

On Weeding and Pruning

So, here's an update on my little garden.

I'm in zone 4, but at my elevation, I seem to have a bit of a micro climate, and things are slower to flourish than in other areas of zone 4... such as at Kristiina's house. 

Over Memorial Weekend, I dutifully sowed my seeds and transplanted my little tomato plants (which I started in the house from seed in February).  That's the earliest recommended planting time due to our potential for late frost.

So far I have one little, very peculiar looking, cucumber.  It's about 4 inches long.

I have green tomatoes...

...and more green tomatoes...

...and MORE green tomatoes...

I have lovely squash plants and flowers, which apparently will never fruit because it seems I have "all male plants" or so I'm told is the reason why the flowers just wither and die.  Too bad, they're such healthy vines.  I think I could have had some real beauties (butternut and acorn).  Please forgive the ridiculous looking chicken wire "fence."  It was placed there, straight and not bowing, when the seeds were sown so that the dogs would not trample them.  It worked.

And the carrots.  The poor, neglected carrots.  The tops are a good foot tall, but beneath the soil, the roots are pencil thin and, I would assume, not very long.  Is it any wonder?  Look at the weeds they're having to compete with for space.  Not only that, I didn't thin them enough.  The weeding and the pruning... takes discipline and faith.   ...and that sounds like a parable. 

It's true, I can make myself appear to be healthy and thriving, just like those carrot tops, but if I don't remove the weeds in my life; the busyness, the distractions, the time-wasters, then what grows within (or beneath)  -my spiritual character and maturity-  will be thin and frail, just like those carrots I'm shamefully neglecting.

And as for pruning.  I knew I didn't thin those babies enough - I didn't know it would be so hard.  Oh, not in the literal sense.  The tiny seedlings came out of the ground almost too easily; but I mean in the having to decide which of them would be allowed to stay and which of them would be plucked and tossed... that was challenging.  It's easy to lop off a dead branch, but to remove something to the compost heap that is healthy and thriving just to make greater growth potential for what remains... that was hard to do! 

So it is with life.  You can participate in a multitude of noble endeavors, but sometimes the wiser thing to do is say no to the greater number of them.  But how do you decide what you'll do and what you won't.  Only through prayer in faith and abandon to grace.

And don't forget your garden needs food, water and sunshine.  Let the word of God be what you chew on and marinate in and the Living Water quench your dry, weary self.   Cover it all in prayer and let His grace fall on you like warm sun rays. You'll flourish. 

It's good that I know that, now I should listen to me; the one who is always tempted to read the [usually awesome] twitter-link article and that [typically great] blog-post link on Facebook, allowing others to interpret what He really wants to tell me Himself.  Community is good, and encouraging one another admirable, but not in lieu of devouring the love letters that have been written to me personally.  I need to remember that... remember to close the laptop cover and settle in between the leather covers of what was divinely inspired.  To be completely fed and lavishly nurtured by the One who knows me and loves me best.

Well, my little carrot bed is going to get some weeding and pruning attention this weekend, with the hope of reaping a healthy harvest after all.

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