Skip to main content

Tending the garden

Some of us dread Monday mornings more than any other day of the week - looking longingly at the weekend that has drawn to a close upon us. Isn't it amazing how many times we look at the week as "good" or "bad" just by how it starts - how that "Monday" goes for us? If we have a so-so Monday, we hope for a good week. If Monday comes in like a fury, we just buckle up, settle, in, and hold on for the very bumpy ride! From time to time, I reread passages that I am quite familiar with in scripture and today was no different. I was re-reading the creation story and came across something pretty amazing about our great big God.

The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. (Genesis 2:15)

God himself had just settled down after pretty long work week of creating all things. In recounting his "work week", we would find everything from creation of stars, moon, and sky to his 'big finale' of the creation of man himself. In the midst of this accounting, we find the words above - pointing toward a purpose for Adam - he wasn't just created and left to his own devices. Eden had been created for man to enjoy - but also to work - to have a purpose for each day. I don't believe Eden was an after-thought by God, but a pre-planned design in order to help Adam feel "purpose" in his life.

It was God's intent for us to work - and work well, putting our full selves into whatever it is that we have before us for the day. Adam was actually given the garden to work it and to take care of it with all the talent he had been given. God was taking care of Adam - but Adam also had some responsibilities he was to fulfill - his work was important. Guess what? God gave you the very position you find yourself in today - to work it and tend it - complete with the Mondays all the way to the much anticipated and appreciated weekends!

It makes no difference if you are placed in the position of going to work each day in a high-rise building, dressed in the nicest suit, or you scramble after wee ones, hair pulled back into a pony tail, clad in house-slippers, well-worn blue jeans, and your favorite sweatshirt. It is your position to work and tend what God has given - regardless of where it is your 'garden' might be. I think God created us to be involved in "fruitful" activity because he knows very well how much trouble we get into when our minds and hands are idle! In the idleness of our minds - we concoct all kinds of schemes - most of which are really not helpful to our soul, emotions, or spirit! Some might even call it mischief!

In today's economy, many are without "work" in the sense of being able to earn an income from a "job". There is a tendency to use the term "unemployed" as a tag or label for not having "productive" work for which we get paid. Don't get me wrong, but income is only one thing we "earn" from being engaged in "work". God says whatever we put our hands to, paid or unpaid activity, we are to do with all our might. It is in the activity he designs for us that we are immensely blessed - even when it seems like all hope we might have had is gone, we are barely walking around and a little on the wounded side, and the battle seems to be too tough to handle. As long as Adam was taking care of the garden as God had designed, he did well, enjoyed time with God, and communed in the presence of the Almighty. It was when Adam (and Eve) began to consider things in his (her) "idleness" trouble entered in! Regardless of the circumstances of our "work" week - God's words to us are: Work it and take care of it! It may not be all we expected, dreamed of, or hoped for - but it is ours! What we choose to do with the "work" we are given determines the "fruitfulness" of our "garden" this week!

For those who find themselves without gainful employment during these times, my prayer is for God to open doors for you this week which have previously been closed to you. May he richly reward you in the "labors" you are undertaking in your pursuit of employment. In the time between being "unemployed" and being "employed", may you never lose sight of the call to work and tend whatever it is he has given to you to do in this period of time. It is this activity which he intends for this season in your life - in it you will surely find blessing you never imagined possible! Just sayin!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Getting at the heart of it all

Have you ever seen someone so good with their skinning knife they can just peel away the hide of an animal without a rip or tear, no waste of any of the meat just below that skin? I have seen some fishermen able to fillet their catch with such skill not even one bone is found in the fillet. How do they learn this skill? I think it comes to them through practice and with the employment of the right 'tool' to do the job at hand. There is comfort in knowing that God means what he says and his Word will come to pass. His Word is like the scalpel in the skilled hands of a surgeon or the knife in the hands of the skilled hunter. As a nurse, I have seen the skillful use of the scalpel - dissecting away the finest of tissue to protect the healthy tissue and to expose the tissue that has become devitalized by disease or decay. I have also seen the damage done by a "blade" in the hands of one not trained or at all skilled in its use. The difference is beyond description.

God m…

Be a little salt

Ever wonder why Jesus left his disciples with the idea of being 'salt on this earth'? We don't fully appreciate salt these days because we aren't as accustomed to how it was used during the times Jesus spoke those words. We often have to put ourselves into the culture where the words are being recorded in order to fully comprehend the significance of their meaning. In the days of the disciples, salt was a basic "staple" of life. It was that which acted as "preservation" for everything. It also was the main seasoning of the dishes prepared - although there were other spices, salt was a 'staple'. Perhaps we would do well to look at some of the other functions of salt in order to see what Jesus may have meant when he referred to our lives a salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of the earth.

"Let me tell you why you are here. You're here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltin…

Noticed by grace

Stop and notice life around you from time to time - you might just be surprised by what you observe!
Sometimes we miss the "little things" in life. I guess I am as guilty of "glossing over" stuff as the next person. I wonder how much I really miss out on because I never stop long enough, listen close enough, or draw close enough to really "catch" what is happening? There are times when life passes us by at break-neck speed, or perhaps we are passing it by at that insane speed! Slow down, listen a little, get in touch with things and people around you. Notice stuff - it might just blow your mind!

I spelled out your character in detail to the men and women you gave me. They were yours in the first place; then you gave them to me, and they have now done what you said. They know now, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that everything you gave me is firsthand from you, for the message you gave me, I gave them; and they took it, and were convinced that I came fro…