Because I’m spending so much time gardening, I’m tending to notice all of the gardening imagery in the Bible. It all began with Jeremiah–a book I read last week as part of my chronological reading plan (which I highly recommend!). I was beginning to make all sorts of comparisons to our current reality as a form of living in exile. Jeremiah writes a letter to encourage the Israelites during their exile to Babylon.
In chapter 29, Jeremiah offers simple instructions to those living far from their ideal situation. He says this: “Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce.”
Settle down. Plant gardens.
And I did. These past ten weeks, I settled down and planted a garden. Then, as I finished Zechariah this morning, I noted this beautiful promise of God about His people. He says, “The seed will grow well, the vine will yield its fruit, the ground will produce its crops, and the heavens will drop their dew. . Do not be afraid, but let your hands be strong” (8:12-13). I think about how the blessing of God had so much to do with planting and harvesting and the fruitful reward of joyful work. Garden has felt like a connection to an ancient pathway to an original blessing.
I also let the weeding and planting and the growing and the harvesting symbolize all the blessings of God: that truth planted in the heart does grow and produce fruit.