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Monday, March 13, 2017

God's Garden

I have a hard-working friend who owns her own Hair Salon. I have been going to her for years because I really like the way she cuts my hair, but I also go to her because over the years we’ve developed a close friendship. Hairdressers are in a unique profession because if they do their job well, they can get you to relax, which in turn opens you up for conversation. I think my hairdresser probably knows more about me than most of my family and I have made it a point to get to know a lot about her as well.

One of the things I know about her is that she is a Christian and the other thing I know about her is that she is on her feet 10-12 hours a day. She is also the sole support of her family and at nearly 60 years of age, she gets really tired and stressed out at times. She told me the thing she loves the most, the thing that relaxes her and relieves her stress the best, is her garden. Apparently, she has this large plot of land in the back of her property where she grows all types of awesome fruits and vegetables. In fact, last year she won dozens of blue ribbons at the Orange County Fair for her lush and colorful produce.

But this year has been especially difficult for her and for her garden. She is trying to grow her business, so she leased a larger space and hired more people to assist with the salon. The new people haven’t worked out so well but she still has to pay rent. So she has been working even more than normal. In addition to a lack of time, with all the rain and storms we’ve had this year she hasn’t been able to tend to her garden. For the past several months she hasn’t gone out back and just assumed the storms had destroyed her precious plants.

Last week she finally got the time and the nerve to go survey the damage. What she found was that her formerly perfect plot of land was now overwhelmed with enormous weeds, some towering over 4’ in the air. It was disheartening to say the least, but she said she stopped, took a deep breath, and decided to tackle it. As she started to pull the enormous weeds at the perimeter of the garden, an amazing site began to unfold. The fruits and vegetables were not washed away, nor were they strangled by the weeds. As a matter of fact, they were in perfect condition. It was almost as if the weeds had formed a protective blanket around her vibrant little green and red babies, protecting them from the wind and rain. She told me she couldn’t believe what she was saw. By the time she was done, her garden looked like it was going to yield her best crop ever.

Maybe when you spend so much time on your feet, you enjoy gardening because you get to be on your knees for a change. I’m not sure, but what I do know is that when she was done cleaning up her garden she stayed on her knees for a very long time… thankful for the help she received… without even asking! 
The best place to seek God is in a garden. You can always dig for him there.
~ George Bernard Shaw

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