The Gardener

Home » News » The Gardener

I love the feel of the earth in my hands, the warm crumbly texture of it as it sifts through my fingers. It is full of life, teeming with the promise of new growth, dancing with the joy of creation. In the soil is the hope, the past and the future of life. In its primeval promise it embraces the love of the creator.

I worked at the first in the creator's garden, a fertile area where we could always hear the bubbling, laughing voice of the four rivers carrying the living water to the soil. It was joyful work; innovative and exciting. We watched the first flowers grow and named them according to their colour or their scent. The trees were tall and strong, their roots reaching down into the heart of things and drawing sustenance from the source. The fruit on those trees was voluptuous in shape and taste, juices ran down your face as you ate, anointing and nourishing.

My favourite flowers, and his, were the poppies. Their prodigality never ceased to amaze me; carpets of fragile red blooms, extravagant in colour, delicate to touch and fleeting in bloom. They were so beautiful, regally clothed, exulting in the joy of life.

We had to leave, of course. I suppose it was inevitable that we would be unable to resist that fruit, the forbidden fruit. We had so much that we could eat, an abundance of beauty and taste but we had to have it all. 'All or nothing' we said and, as it turned out they were the same thing. We didn't look back as we left but the brightness of the garden shone from behind us and sometimes, when I look towards the sun, I think I see the place again.

There were many gardens after that and my joy in the soil never left me but it was harder now to release its promise. The flowers still grew and with them the persistent weeds. Weeds that threatened to strangle the delicate shoots, to suck the goodness from the soil, to prevent new life and darken hope.
Weeds that would pull the flowers up if you attacked them too soon, weeds of synthetic beauty, sculpted to deceive, subtle in subversion.

The poppies still bloomed, nothing could stop them, so persistent and generous in their flowering are those lilies of the field. They always remind me of his love and care, his delight in his creation. But I was surprised to see them that morning.

It had been a dark week-end, not good for growing. I went to the garden expecting the earth to be weeping, weeping like women, in need of anointing. It began softly at first, a familiar grief, well known and appropriate. Then the shock of emptiness led to despair, to absence and uncertainty, to loneliness.

The weeping drew me across the waking earth. The grass was wet with dew, springing up at every step, quenching thirst, inviting new life. Gossamer threads, spider sculpted, reflected the promise of morning light. Still she wept. I spoke her name, She turned, hope dawning in her eyes. Around our feet the poppies danced in jubilation and, bathed in brightness, we celebrated our homecoming.

'For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive.' (1 Corinthians 15:21-22)

You may also be interested in

POster
Rebecca Catford: Wed 17 Oct 9:00am

You are warmly invited to come to...TWO MINDS: CREATIVE WORSHIPA CREATIVE WORKSHOP LED BY REV PAUL WOOD AND REV IAN WORSFOLD(OPEN TO ALL)10am to 3pm 24th November 2018 Richmond Methodist Church, Queen's Road, Richmond, DL10 4AEPlease bring your own lunchRefreshments will be providedEveryone...

EditSynod2018
Bev Hollings: Thu 27 Sep 4:00pm

District Evangelism ForumSat 6th Oct 2018 9.45 for 10am — 12.30pmElm RidgeTopic 'Resources to develop confidence in talking about God.'Speakers Bev Hollings and Tricia MitchellTo ensure enough materials are available it would be helpful if people booked in advance by contacting Bev on beverly.holli...

L334207
Rebecca Catford: Thu 20 Sep 9:00am

Northallerton Woodwind and Stokesley Methodist Choir are joining in a concert to raise awareness and funds for the work of the Halo Project. The Halo Project supports women and girls at risk of abuse. You can visit their website to find out more.The concert will take place:Friday 28 September 7pmat Stokesley Methodist ChurchTickets cost £7and are...

© 2018 Darlington Methodist District

supporting and encouraging Christian communities