Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Even Though...

"Though the fig tree does not bud
       and there are no grapes on the vines,
       though the olive crop fails
       and the fields produce no food,
       though there are no sheep in the pen
       and no cattle in the stalls,

 18 yet I will rejoice in the LORD,
       I will be joyful in God my Savior."  Habakkuk 3:17-18

This verse this morning made me smile, and made me think of my gardening this year.  Learning to garden in a new space always has its challenges, but this year has been exceptionally so.  It's not been a good year at all for the garden.   As I take my walks through the yard, I look at the plants that bear no fruit, and the spaces where plants were, but rabbits ate them, and I could just shake my head and complain.  I could grumble about the garden- and I admit I do if people ask how the garden is.   But you know, despite all the vegetative carnage in my yard, I am still filled with incredible joy when I walk the yard.

There are still a few plants that are bearing fruit of some kind.  And even though my garden is doing terribly, I still thank God for the garden.  I thank Him for the ability I have to do the gardening, and I thank Him for the wisdom He is giving us to improve the yard and make gardening possible for next year.   More than once, I've found myself thinking the opposite.  When we first moved here, I was so excited about the yard and the blank slate it presented.   As time has gone on though, that excitement translated into realization as to just how much work was waiting for me out there.   And at least twice, I've caught myself wistfully thinking about what it would be like to have that country property where I can put up a big ole industrial strength electric fence... and then I've made myself stop thinking like that.

Because God put us exactly where He wanted us.  And He gave me a yard that needs my tough- it's just going to take some work.  I could re-write Habakkuk's verse to fit my situation, since no figs or olives grow in my yard.

Though the apple tree does not bud
and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the bean crop completely fails
and the fields produce very little food,
though there are no pumpkins in the pen 
and no corn cobs on their stalks,

yet I will rejoice in the LORD
I will be joyful in God my Savior.

Creation itself is such a joy.  Life is such a joy.  It seems like almost every day I am reminded that we need so little- and yet we have so much.  Daily I find great joy in my kids- in seeing the world through their eyes, and spending time with them delighting in the world that God created. Yes, it's a bummer my garden bites this year.  But I'll tell you what, it makes the produce that we do enjoy from the ground that much sweeter.  The other day the four of us very carefully divided the tiniest little cucumber from the garden.  It was a surprise to find out there.  It could very well be the only one we'll have this year, but oh, it was wonderful, and it made us all smile as we nibbled it up.  And when someone gives us a handful of homegrown tomatoes, we are able to delight in them greatly, as we wait for the few fruits we have to ripen.

God is so great to give us these little things to bring us joy.  But you know what?  Even without those little things, we would have great joy, because GOD is our joy.  Thinking on the Lord brings us great joy each and every day.  As we delight in His creation, and we delight in each other, and we delight in His words that He brings us every day from the Bible.  God is our supply, HE is all we need, and He is more than enough.

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