I like to call myself a gardener. OH, I KNOW better than to even put myself in the same hemisphere with all my master gardener friends out there. I claim amateur status at best. As I see it, the difference in a master gardener and an amateur is patience and perseverance. I confess to a lazy streak and lack of focus in gardening---top that off with a long list of gardening projects I NEVER even get off the ground and you have amateur status.
I am much better at reading all the books and magazines about gardening and dreaming of the garden I would love to have than putting in the actual work. Once I finally motivate myself to get out in the garden, I normally stay long enough to get dirt under all my nails before I am distracted and heading off to another project. To top that off those master gardeners have to know all the scientific names of the flora. I cannot even give you the common name of most flowers but instead tend to group them into yellow, red, orange, etc. Why if I cannot remember the common name ~coral bell WHY in heavens name would I EVER think I could remember Heuchera~much less pronounce it correctly.!
My REAL gardening problem is NOT any of this, but instead, my laziness. I am too lazy to dig the right size hole to put the plant in the ground. It is not easy digging holes. There is that hard ground and the web of roots that are invariably in the ground and the water system pipes and electrical lines to avoid. It is really a LOT of trouble to not only dig that hole deep and wide enough but to also deal with the maze of roots. Why some time you even need to till mulch and other additives to make the ground the perfect medium for the plants. It REALLY is a lot of work! I cannot tell you how many times I have stuck a plant in a too shallow-too tight hole. A sure recipe for a struggling plant.
BUT-when you bother to do the preparation correctly, you reap the benefits of all that hard work. Your garden will thrive-even in tough conditions--and you will reap the reward of your work.
So it is with our spiritual gardens. We need to tend the garden of our soul. Establish the dirt work into which we dig the correct size holes in which to plant. The garden will flourish when we take the time to prepare for the seeds which God sows. The roots will grow deeper and spread wider to be near the source of nourishment and water. In times of great drought, little sunshine, and searing heat, our garden will survive. Not only will it survive, but live to thrive again in times of ease. Tend your garden well--there are no shortcuts. Your spiritual garden will be a place of great beauty and bountiful harvest if you richly prepare the ground in which the seeds are sown.
3 “Listen! A farmer went out to sow his seed. 4 As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. 5 Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. 6 But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. 7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants, so that they did not bear grain. 8 Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up, grew and produced a crop, some multiplying thirty, some sixty, some a hundred times.”