Gardening has always fascinated me. Not because I’m any good at it. Quite the contrary. I have the impeccable talent of letting even a succulent die. I mean, a succulent. A plant that by definition is drought resistant. I’m just going to let that simmer for a while…
Yep. Good times.
I think the thing that draws me to gardening, is the very thing that makes me shy away from it. You have to get your hands dirty. You have to plan, prune, plant and water your little piece of Eden. It takes time. Determination. You have to be willing to dig down, and endure a few scratches on the way. Some seedlings will grow into great trees. Some won’t. Some flowers will blossom in season. Others won’t. And you have to accept that. You have to accept that although you toil and sweat, growth is not in your control.
Luckily, I don’t have control issues…
I wish it was as easy as sprinkling a little fairy dust on the ground, spinning around three times while repeating “I do believe in fairies”. But it’s not. Gardening is not a picnic. And I have to admit that if it was easy, it would take the childish wonder and admiration right out of the whole process.
My grandmother used to love gardening. She could make anything grow. Seriously. She was like a magical gardening unicorn. If I close my eyes, I can still hear her humming an inaudible tune whilst wandering through her little piece of heaven. She made it look so simple. Her garden was always filled with abundant life and beauty.
Life shared the ultimate gardening secret with my grandmother. A penny, if you will. Letting go. She just had an unshakeable faith that every seed would grow in its own time. I am absolutely convinced that her lush garden was not a result of following a recipe for success. It was the result of a lifetime spent learning that you can only steward growth, not control it.
Control suffocates growth. It eats away your roots, deprives you of water and always keeps you in the shade. The past few weeks I’ve been struggling to get this blogpost out. Not because I didn’t want to write or share it. Just because sharing it would mean admitting that everything is not okay, and that I’ve stumbled down the well-treaded pathway of control again. Pride is such a sneaky, invasive plant.
The bottom line is that I’ve been allowing weeds to sprout up in the garden of my heart, because of my obsession with keeping myself in check. There was a moment of divine clarity in the past few days. You know those moments where everything just makes perfect sense? Those “I can see clearly now the rain is gone” moments.
I was not created to control. I was created to surrender. Penny drop.
I broke down, and ugly cried. In a cool way. Complete vulnerability in the safest possible Arms. Jesus smiled, and reminded me that the cross already dealt with these weeds.
“Let go, My love… You’re safe. I’ll take it from here, but you need to let go now.”
Dearest, what a wonderfully complex garden lies within your heart. It’s unique. Captivating. Beyond compare. I don’t know what your story is. I don’t know what you’ve needed to endure. But I know that you were created to grow, in beautiful surrender, closer and closer to Father’s heart.
Be still. Breathe. Let it grow.