My wife loves the out of doors. She love to plant and tend her garden. For her, much like it is for her father; gardening is an act of worship. I know that may sound strange to some but they both experience the profound joy of the Lord when they are laboring in the soil.
One of Amy’s prouder moments of horticultural genius came several years ago when she planted a red dogwood tree in our front yard. We had only been in this particular house for about a year in which time Amy had deemed our front yard, “entirely too bare.”
She loved that little tree. She tended and managed it meticulously, and cared for it religiously. As one year, then two, then three years past that little tree became a striking testament to her work. And then we moved and Amy’s little tree into which she had invested so much time and love had to stay.
Three years later we were back in the town and decided to drive past the house; I actually think Amy wanted to check on the tree more than she wanted to see the house. To her horror her beloved little red dogwood had become diseased and was dead. It was early June and Amy’s little tree was not red and lush the way it should have been. It was gray and sparse. The bark was pealing and it was clear that no life existed in our little tree.
My wife mourned her little tree that day. She mourned the fact that she had not been there to take care of it. She mourned the beauty that had been lost. And as she mourned I was reminded that we all have the potential to be like that little tree.
My mind when to Psalm 1 (the three verses we looked at yesterday). It was obvious from the state of Amy’s little tree that it had been ravaged by disease. The neglect of the current home owns had enabled the disease to spread and what should have been beautiful and full of life had become an ugly shell void of vitality. The tree did not bear fruit in its season. Something had gone terribly wrong.
As we drove past our old house that day the Lord reminded me to remain vigilant. Don’t allow yourself to be diseased by the counsel of the wick. Don’t neglect holy pursuits as you stand in the way of sinners. Don’t be filled with the poison of mockery. But rest in and drink deeply of the delightful provision of the God.