The hard (for Florida) freeze a couple of weeks back did a lot of damage in the garden. Fortunately, Rebekah has so much plant life growing out there that the probable 25% fatality rate may have been exactly what we needed. Consequently there was a lot of debris to rake out and bag up.
I found out that, while giant 80 gallon construction site garbage bags look very impressive standing beside the road, being able to fill one with 79.9 gallons of compressed yard trash by no means guarantees I'll have the strength to move it once I do. Wet leaves smooshed into large trash bags weigh a ton!
Then of course it rained - along with a stiff breeze - dislodging another storm of leaves, acorns, small branches and various items of organic material. So now the yard looks pretty much the same as it did right after breakfast when I first started...
The good news is that I enjoyed the fresh air, exercised some muscles that have been AWOL for some time now, and managed a good visit with my neighbor.
Part of me wishes I had a way to actually jot down mental notes while I'm out in the garden, because I invariably generate all kinds of potentially useful commentary when I'm working with my hands:
- Gardening just lends itself to mulling, cogitating, ruminating, and masticating ideas. Today I wrestled with myself a lot. I tend to take both sides of a debate, question myself relentlessly, think impulsive thoughts through to their logical conclusion and then start over. Don't be confused - this doesn't make me brilliant so much as honest.
- I thought a lot about the damage so many Christians continue to do to Christ's message by loading it up with their own prejudice, judgmentalism and exclusivity. I'm still thinking about my friend Marvin's question: "One has to wonder how (insert name of bigoted, judgmental Christian leader here: ___ _________ ) got that influential in the first place?"
- In a related line of thought, I found myself wondering about the tendency of many Christians to create a religion that is - essentially - interchangeable with nationalism.
- And I also took a long look at the way that I act and interact, and examined my life to see if it says anything substantial about the life abundant. Do I - as Paul suggested in Philippians - "hold out the word of life"?
Just musings. Just getting back in touch with myself. Just working on the home we are so blessed to enjoy. Just being a pilgrim in progress.
By now, near the end of this quiet evening, with a chapter or so to read for my Sunday morning study group and a long walk with Scout just a half-hour away, I'm pretty much prepared to go to worship tomorrow - with an open heart and an owned need for seeking God's grace.
Grace to you this weekend; and peace - DEREK