FiveMinuteFriday is the chance to join in with a host of other bloggers and write on the same writing prompt sent out by Lisa-Jo Baker. We have 5 minutes to write, unedited, on whatever comes to mind! This week its Garden.
I’ve missed having a garden. The last place I lived was a semi-detached house, with a long sloping grass area falling away to a rickety area of decking and a tumble-down shed. We had the best views of the neighbourhood, especially on Bonfire night. There was an apple tree overhanging from next door, and they were generous with the fruit.
But we were busy. I don’t think there can have been more than 20 days, in all the years I lived there, that I ever really sat in that garden and enjoyed it. I spent more time working at it… mowing the lawn, and trying to prevent the apple-rot from forming an impassable slime on the steps to the shed. The roses straggled every year and we were never quite sure how to prune them. The only real triumph we knew was the harvest of blackberries and raspberries from the brambles and planted raspberry canes.
‘Garden’ eventually came to mean ‘work’, and ‘incessant work’ at that.
I now live in a first floor flat, and we pay a service charge for a gardener to come in and tend the communal patch of lawn and beds around the flats. There’s no personal investment of work, and there’s still little real absorption of the tranquility that such an area can provide. When I cut loose, it’s into the woodlands nearby – the wild, as-you-find-it. It feels like such a gift.
Well…. for the first time I ran out of time on this fmf: there’s so much more to say. How God sees our lives as a garden – full of delights and beauty. He likes to hang out there, with us! Why do we only see ourselves as a ‘work in progress’? Why look out on this ‘space’ of our lives and see only the negative, the weeds, the imperfections? When I can enjoy nature in its wildest, why not also appreciate my soul and others’ for what they are – growing, nurtured in places, wild in others? Why not bow to the seasons of pruning and harvest, the seasons of growth and famine? There’s so much to be understood in this parable, and of course, given the day today, I couldn’t help but think of ‘Come into your garden, my love; taste its finest fruits,’ (Song 4.16) as I remembered those exquisite raspberries!