Fireflies: Moments: Heart Gardeners         

May 6, 2012

Moments: Heart Gardeners

I have this picture in my head of me in gardening clothes with a sun hat and gloves, a shovel in one hand and rake in the other.  When in reality I have had very limited experience and mediocre success in actually growing a garden.  A few years ago for Mother's Day my wonderful husband and my amazing boys gave me a patch of dirt 18’ x 20’.  

They had spent days clearing it of debris, weeding, turning the soil, adding top soil and now it was officially a rectangle of soft, flat, raked land ready to receive plants.  After church and a Mother’s Day celebration meal, we headed out back to plant the pallet of plants we had bought as well as some seeds.  A couple hours in we were all coming to terms with how much work this was going to be.  We made mounds for the melons, rows for the beans, and caged the tomato plants.  When we finished that day we felt a great sense of accomplishment.  We had romantic notions of the organic readily available vegetables we were going to be able to harvest and bring straight from the garden to the table.  

As time went on we had some success.  Some of the plants flourished and others never popped their heads above the ground (stubborn melons!).  I didn’t thin the carrots and they grew into weird shapes, which delighted my 8 year old.  The garden required constant attention; watering, weeding, pruning, and protecting from a myriad of pests. At the end of the season when we were debating turning the soil over so it would be ready to replant the following year, we made the decision to pour concrete over it and build a pergola.  We decided that right now in this season for our family it was more than we could manage.  

As a mother I have also pictured myself as a gardener.   I view the soil of my children’s hearts as my responsibility.  When I see hard spots that need to be broken up and made soft I go after it.  When I see weeds of sinful attitudes pop up I search for the root and pull it out.  I water them with love and provide the sun light of joy and laughter.  I ask the Lord what He is doing (growing) in them and work alongside Him offering supports (trellises) and shoring up the areas that need it to maximize the opportunity for growth.  I plant the seed of truth (God’s word). Unlike the garden in my back yard, my children’s hearts are a garden that I cannot afford to chalk up to too much work.  I have to stay vigilant and purposeful.  Trusting in good time the fruit of my labor will bless them and position them to reach their full potential.  
Enjoy your "Moments",

Lanise Santala

The Parable of the Sower

That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat by the lake. Such large crowds gathered
around him that he got into a boat and sat in it, while all the people stood on the shore.

Then he told them many things in parables, saying: “A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. Whoever has ears, let them hear.”
Matthew 13:1-9 (NIV)