Among the many lessons my parents have taught me, the one I struggle with most to this day is patience. However, years of being by my father’s side ignited in me a parallel passion for gardening, with a deep love of heirloom varieties and especially growing flowers. Since I could hold a pencil, the flowers my father grew were my favorite thing to draw and paint.
Last week gave us a serious thaw, and that earthy smell of Spring was encouraging my daffodils to start their rise. I told them— out loud, while walking our dogs— “not yet! It isn’t time!” Sure enough, the temperature has dropped again and we have a new coating of snow.
Those who have loved me all my life know the special kind of restless I get in February. I pour over seed catalogs and consult the Farmer’s almanac as I plan for those first vegetables. It’s hard for me to not jump ahead to setting up my seed starting station in the south window, because more than anything I just want to see something green.
It’s a very similar experience to my faith journey in several ways.
I read quite a bit, both past and present voices, trying to expand my understanding and inform my decisions. I also watch the process of growth a bit too closely, hence my conversation with the bulbs I transplanted from my childhood garden to my current home this past fall. Most of all, I try to find people who share this passion with me so I might be welcomed and understood.
This year, during these difficult weeks ahead while all Northeastern gardeners wait for the lion and the lamb of March to pass by, I’m shifting my focus. I hope to spend more of my time and energy on forging those connections and fellowships rather than waiting around watching for sprouts. I’ll keep a vase of flowers on the table as the reminder that Spring will come, and with it, the powerful celebration of Easter!
Starting on Ash Wednesday, March 2nd, at 12 pm EST, I’ll be holding space for anyone who would like to study the SALT Project’s ‘Vincent Van Gogh and the Beauty of Lent’ Devotional alongside me. We’ll be taking a close look at the paintings and writings of this often misunderstood artist while we wait for the days to lengthen and follow Jesus’ path to the cross. There’s powerful connections for us to find, and I look forward to the discussions we’ll have!
If you’d like to join, please register in the Google form below. Zoom information and the guide will be sent via email on Tuesday, March 1.