And the Lord God planted a garden in Eden, in the east, and there he put the man whom he had formed. Genesis 2:8 ESV
What is a garden? Is it defined by rows of roses and peonies; or is it painted on canvas by the brushstrokes of pathways and fountains? The first garden we learn of was filled with all kinds of fruit trees, and the scriptures tell us that God planted it in Eden. Having spent more hours on my knees pulling weeds than kneeling at the altar in church I have learned that the secret of a garden’s beauty lies as much in the walls that surround it and the spaces between the flowers as in any blossom or leaf. Those boundaries say clearly, “This is my garden and that is the field.” Or “The primroses marching across the flower bed are lovely, but they must be pulled out in places, or they will overrun the foxglove and hollyhock. In his poem, “The Mending Wall” Robert Frost wrote, “Good fence make good neighbors.”. Though Frost himself was not in favor of boundaries, his neighbor was, and I have learned that God is also. God is the gardener of our hearts and the one in charge of order. He sets our limits, prunes our overgrowth and transplants us from time to time when He chooses. Like Jeremiah’s image of the potter and clay, we are all in the hands of the Master Gardener of the universe. It will not help us to whine about the gardening He is doing in us today. We must not only trust in His spiritual gardening skills, but we might want to spend some extra time on our knees next to Him in our garden bed of prayer!
I am so thankful for the warmer weather breaking here out in Florida. I know from phone calls to my sister that you who are my Northern brothers and sisters are still digging out of the last system. God bless you I do remember! With all that cold it is hard to imagine that Ash Wednesday is only a month away! Today I am posting the link for my 2022 large print Lenten Reader. Each year we face different circumstances but the hope we have in Christ’s death burial and resurrection remains the same. Whatever we are going through God teaches us to wait on Him for the answer.
They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings like eagles. They shall run and not be weary. They shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:31 KJV
So, you might ask, “What exactly is Lent?” That is one great question with more than one answer! In general, Lent is the time from Ash Wednesday until either the Wednesday before Easter, Holy Saturday or Easter Sunday depending on which tradition you follow. You also might wonder why we should observe this 40-day period since there is no record of anyone in the Bible doing so. For starters, it is never a bad idea to set aside special times for seeking God’s will and purpose. Some call it, “Waiting on the Lord.” Waiting in the right way, comes with God’s promise of strength and renewal. Some of you may choose to fast certain foods or to do special acts of service, during these weeks. However, you choose to honor the season, the most important thing of all is to focus on Jesus.
Here is the link for the 2022 large print Easter Devotional. The eBook is also available now but if you are wanting a standard print version you will have to wait till the end of the week. God bless!