This week, I began working, in earnest, on the small garden behind the parish hall. I had seen the beds, and knew what needed to be done. The soil was depleted, and the beds messy. I thought it would be best to pull out what was there, turn the earth, and add in some soil conditioner and compost, adding nutrients to the dirt, making it a more hospitable environment for produce to grow in.
So, knowing what needed to be done, I set to work – pulling out weeds and saving some garlic chives, rosemary, and curry leaf – in hopes that some church folks would be able to use them and take them home. The work was monotonous, and as the sun beat down I realised I didn’t in fact want to take out the curry leaf tree – it was providing the only shade I had, and I liked it.
As I repeatedly bent and pulled, and raked through the roots, pulling them out of the beds – I thought about my own stubbornness. I am very headstrong, and as I worked to uproot the chives, I got frustrated that they were at least as headstrong as I. I wondered, then, if the work I was doing outwardly might mirror the work I was attempting inwardly.
I have come to St. Peter’s with no agenda, other than to live into this calling I have felt in my life since I was a young child. I have a contract which outlines some basic ministries I might become involved in, but there is so much more to ministry, so much more to the life of God’s spirit, than can be placed on a piece of paper.
So, my prayer in the garden became – prepare my soul as soil. Uproot what once was there, to re-invigorate, and bring new life, to these beds. Add to that which has been depleted, and bring new, hopeful shoots, to the surface – stretching their heads towards the sun, and finding the light in this new place. Amen.
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