This is the time of the year when many people are preparing their gardens for planting. My experience as a farmer is limited, but I have had some experience growing a successful garden that flourished. Over 25 years ago and shortly after moving to Kentucky, we had a good-sized garden. I was attending school full-time almost two hours from home each way, serving as pastor, and we had two preschool children under age 3. We canned and ate a lot of homegrown vegetables and I had church members weekly telling me when to weed, water, or harvest.
I also know a bit about planting gardens that were essentially much less productive. I have had my share of springtimes since that one when my efforts failed miserably.
Perhaps there are many secrets to successful gardening- one essential ingredient is good soil and the right location, especially the right amount of sun. If you want a good garden most people will use some sort of supplement to the soil: compost, nutrients or fertilizer to create the right mixture which will allow growth to come.
One of the things we forget about at times as Christians is we are to be growing as disciples. It’s not automatic- weeds are automatic! I can plow ground- fertilize the area- but I’m unlikely to get butterbeans or tomatoes, unless I sow the seed or plant the plant and care and nurture it by weeding, watering, etc.
During this time of Lent- (spring) I will be talking about spiritual disciplines on Wednesday evenings during prayer meeting time. Think of them as fertilizer for your soul. One does not plant tomatoes tomorrow and harvest them next week to eat on a sandwich. Spiritual disciplines are about sustained habits and behaviors that bring about wonderful and rich results in time. Join me in a time of reviewing the classic book by Richard Foster: Celebration of Discipline: The Path to Spiritual Growth.