A Good Gardener

This afternoon I sat in my muddy garden and decided to conquer the war on weeds and grass. This is my first year of having a garden, and I am realizing it is harder than it looks. I was overwhelmed by how much growth was happening, as most of it was not in a vegetable category. I soon found myself feeling sad as I was looking around. “Well,” I thought, “this is a pretty good example of how I am feeling lately.” I put a lot of work into the garden, and yet there was little fruit. I planted things that never came up and things I didn’t want in the first place was growing beautifully. It was messy, muddy, and I was feeling once again, defeated. 

My kids are like magnets when they know mommy isn’t very happy. Oliver said, “mom, are you okay or is it just allergies and that is why your nose is runny?” Then my George came and sat next to me and this is what he said,

“Mom, growing a garden isn’t about just growing what you want, it is about growing things and helping them as they grow, even if it is weeds. I mean, that is a garden, you grow things, even some things you don’t want to. Our little garden is pretty good, and I mean, you have lots of things growing in here, so that’s a good thing mom, you are growing things, so you are good at gardening.”

I put down my gloves and came inside to write this down so I wouldn’t forget. God, in His tender and thoughtful way revealed this to my son to remind me that I’m okay. That even when things go unplanned, when the unwanted arise, even when my own self gets in the way, God says I’m still a good gardener and God reminds me that He is still faithful. This year, I keep hearing this same whisper that says, “you can’t make babies anymore, you can’t write, you can’t homeschool your boys, you can’t do ministry, you should just give up by now.” It’s been loud, but in God’s FAITHFULNESS God’s voice is always louder. 

Maybe someone reading this today needs to be reminded that God’s plan and purpose for your life will not always be the lush, beautiful garden you have expected. But in the different seasons of planting, growing, and harvesting, there is beautiful wisdom and growth that comes from it all. Delays are not denials, and in the frustration of weeds and things that you think shouldn’t be there, embrace them and find new strategies that create growth and perseverance. Hebrews 10:35 says, “So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised.” 

We are not to shrink back, but to grow taller, when things don’t always go our way and look differently than we think they should. This is a season where I analyze the soil, and I see what needs change and what needs new growth. To see hope in the mess and trust His timing and faithfulness.

After pulling every last weed and blade of grass, I found vegetables that I didn’t even know were there. I saw, something growing and producing, even though it was being squished by the tower of weeds. What is growing in you, that you simply do not see? I see thousands of glimmers of hope, wanting you to take the risk, to not shrink back and to trust the process and timing. You my friend are a good gardener, and God is always Faithful. 

Published by Emily Rodewald

Emily is a writer and worship leader. She has written several worship songs, she is a co-author or two children's books and has begun writing about the light of Jesus in her blog at www.emilyrodewald.com. She is a co-founder of Parallel Ministries and a mom of two boys, George and Oliver. She has been married for 13 years to the man of her dreams, Daniel. She and her family live in beautiful Montana where they enjoy taking the boys fishing, going on adventures, and renovating their new home.

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