Friday, May 22, 2009


I held forty-three babies yesterday.  They had short tender little arms and curled-up legs eager to find some solid ground in which to stretch-out.  They had no heads and were green all over of course, but each one had it's own unique look and personality.

Some had sprouted quickly from seedling while others were a bit more stubborn.  Jerry Thompson, their caregiver, talked to me about each one, how he had nutured them in his windowsill during the cold winter days and fathered them with just the right conditions to give them everything they needed for life and fruitfulness.

Apparently, little tomato plants need a lot of attention in their early days if they are going to have any chance of surviving, let alone bearing fruit.  From the moment they poke their little heads through the soil, they lean toward the sun.  Jerry said they must be rotated everday or they will just grow sideways, all laid-over reaching for the light.  And their stems need resistance to make their bodies strong, so Jerry turns on the ceiling fan in his sunroom to gently discipline the sprouts to stand tall.

By the time I saw them, each baby tomato plant was eager to spread it's roots and show what it could do.  Gently and with special attention to hole depth and just the right amount of fertilizer, we tucked each plant into it’s garden bed, willing each one to do it’s best.  And I could not help but think of God’s hand on each one of us.

He knits us together in our mother’s womb and smiles with pride as we uncurl our legs to find our feet on the solid ground he offers.  He designed us for the Light but allows sometimes gentle breezes and sometimes even storms because disciplining is good for us; it makes us stand stronger in that Light.  He has prepared a bed of nourishment is for us through Christ in His Spirit in which we can take root and bear the fruit he intends, and he’s willing each of us to do our best. Clearly, apart from his soil we can do nothing.  

God has wonderful things planned for us in his garden.  I invite you to spend a little time with him there.