Getting your hands dirty

There’s just something about putting your hands in the dirt that makes you feel grounded. This past weekend, we began preparing our garden and are doing raised beds for the first time.
We had two of our granddaughters helping for two days. Mind you they are seven and ten and so you might think they weren’t that much help, but they were. In fact, they seemed to enjoy getting their hands dirty. Mostly because that meant they could then use the water hose to wash the dirt off and somehow manage to get wet and wet each other as well.
Still, they helped put the garden soil in the beds, make it even and put the plants in the holes. Then they watered. When we took them home one of their parents asked if they wanted to help with the garden again and they both said an emphatic “yes”.
The older one also tried to help Grandpa with the chicken pen but it became too much of a chore. We still have things to plant so maybe they will return and help with more planting. We should be teaching the younger generation about planting gardens and growing your own food. It’s an important lesson.
I’ve loved gardening from a very young age. My grandmother lived on a farm and there were always vegetables and fruits to pick during each season. I didn’t really get to help with the planting then. We had a small garden at home which I did help with from time to time.
As an adult, I started having my own garden. Working on and in the garden is therapeutic at times. Reaping the harvest from all that hard work is also rewarding and refreshing. You get to see results from the work. But the reward doesn’t come without lots of work. I think it runs in my blood though, because most of my gardens have been successful.
Going to raised beds this year we didn’t have to prepare the soil as much as usual since we added garden soil from bags to the dirt we hauled from the yard. But next year, it will be back to tilling the soil gain before planting. It just comes with the territory if you are going to garden.
Nothing in life worth having, really comes without work. Part of that work is in preparation. Preparing yourself and doing what is necessary for the task at hand.
You can compare gardening to life in many areas. First you do need a vision or plan for your garden. If you do it willy nilly and hope for the best, chances are it will not produce as much as otherwise and you could have disastrous results. It’s the same with life: you have to at least semi-plan for some things to be successful.
Prioritizing what plants you will grow is also important. Certain plants shouldn’t be planted together. I tend to want to overextend myself in how many varieties of vegetables I will plant. I always have to check myself and prioritize to plant only those which we will utilize or share with others because space is limited. In life, we must prioritize what’s important or we can become overwhelmed. Putting God at the top of your list helps with everything else on your list.
With a garden you reap what you sow. You can’t reap watermelon if you don’t sow watermelon seeds. In life we should be sowing seeds of kindness and compassion. If we want blessings, we should strive to bless others. Also in life sowing can mean working on a degree, house, family, etc. You have to put in the effort to reap the rewards.
A garden needs constant tending. You just can’t plant it and let it go. Weeds have to be removed, the soil fertilized and it must be watered if there is not enough rain. That can require getting your hands dirty. Your life needs constant tending too. We must watch out for weeds like spending too much time on the internet, procrastination, neglecting our health and adding unnecessary tasks.
Gardening requires patience as from the time you plant until the time you harvest does not happen overnight. You must trust the process and in life you must trust God.
It’s not always easy to get to the harvest. You can run into obstacles you can’t control, like too much rain which can create problems in your garden. In gardening you must be flexible as you do in life because you are not in control. No matter what happens we need to keep moving forward.
If you’ve taken proper care of your garden, you’ll reap a bountiful harvest. Some years, of course, may be better than others. If something was amiss in your garden strategy this year, you can adjust and do it differently next year. If we live our lives properly as our Father in Heaven wants us to live, we will reap the blessings of a joyous life. No matter what mistakes you might have made today, you can readjust and try again as God’s mercies are fresh every day.
Are you properly preparing your life daily by spending time with your Creator? It’s the best way for a harvest of blessing and peace. Happy gardening. ©2019

VICTORIA SIMMONS Is a columnist, author, motivational speaker, minister and publisher of The Georgia Post/Byron Buzz. Contact her at: vsimmons54@gmail.com

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About vsimmons54

Veteran journalist of 40 years. Editor, Motivational Speaker, Ordained Minister, CEO of A Light in the Darkness Ministries, Copy Editor, Copywriting, Event Planner, Lensclusive Photography, Babbling Brook Consulting and Design, event planner and author. I love to write and speak and I love Jesus. I also do copy writing and editing. Recently co-authored Vanished Towns Revisited.
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