Erin spent the Memorial Day weekend planting her flowers in her garden.
It’s been a ritual ever since we lived in Dearborn. She loves the results,
but it’s the process of selecting the plants that excites her. All the variety,
all the color, enable her to create an extraordinary floral display which
lasts from Memorial Day through Labor Day. It’s her gift to herself, her
family, and the neighborhood.
This year, I said I’d go with her to Stauffers to help her make her selections. (She really doesn’t
need me, but she lets me go anyway. She knows from experience my unreliability.) I lasted about
25 minutes before I was bored and started whining. I wanted to go to McDonald’s for lunch right
then! But she prevailed upon me to sit tight, saying, “She’d only be another 20 minutes or so.” I
dutifully carried her selections out to the car, and then loaded about 15 forty-pound bags of
potting mix into the back, too. By then, I really was ready to go to McDonalds!
I was proud of myself for being a good husband! Erin made the requisite compliments and even let me get a shake! She made it clear,
though, that since we had to leave Stauffers early due to my feigned
hunger, she’d have to come back alone later to complete her selections. (After 35 years, she can’t be fooled!)
The good news is that the plants are all in the ground and the garden looks fabulous! I do the
watering (a very important job), and when the neighbors stop to say how beautiful things look, I
bask in the glory for a moment, and then tell them I’ll let Erin know. I don’t want them to get the
impression that I had anything to do with it. (They don’t!)
I can’t help but marvel at the extraordinary beauty of the flowers. Each variety is unique
with colors that are distinctive and exquisite. God’s handiwork is beyond our wildest
imaginings. We can too easily take it all for granted! But, year after year, I take time to look with
my eyes wide open at the miracle of God’s gifts to humankind. Looking with wonder is a spiritual
discipline. Doing so cleanses our souls and reinvigorates our imaginations.
What would life be like if we lived in a monochromatic world where there was no color, no
variety? God is a not so secret artist, reveling in the ability to create a landscape that is miraculous! All that’s asked of us is that we take time to appreciate God’s skills and allow ourselves to
immerse our whole being in them.
This summer, I invite you to immerse yourselves in
God’s great garden. Allow it to work its magic on you. And
while you’re there, say a little prayer of thanks to the One
who makes it all possible. The Heavenly Landscape Architect will surely appreciate it!
From Pastor Kent’s Desk
Grace & Peace, Kent