In May and June, people stop and stare at my garden. Pedestrians ask questions, cars often slow and take photos. And if you’re in the neighborhood, feel free to cut some roses for a bouquet– I have plenty.
I love tending my garden, calling my plants by both their common and Latin names, pulling weeds, adding compost, moving plants from one spot to the other. And while I’m almost drunk with beauty during those May blooms, I love my garden most in those first days of Spring when what was dead comes to life.
Peony shoots literally break the soil, pushing toward the sun, sticklike trees with sprout new buds. Every day, every hour, I watch the world transform. Hope. Life.
Maybe you heard about the Superbloom in Death Valley in February? The hottest, driest place on the North American continent, Death Valley usually sports an impressive dirt patch. But every ten years or so the perfect combination of sun and rain produces a superbloom where the desert bursts into life.
As one ranger said, “It’s interesting to see all the seeds that have been waiting beneath this dry, dusty valley just waiting for a chance to bloom.”
Maybe you’re just coming out of a hard winter, a ten-year drought or even a 40 year trudge through the desert, but I promise there are seeds, wonders, beauties just beneath the surface waiting to bloom.
In late March, I surveyed an old rose bush in my garden– dry, brown, canes full thorns. I was ready to rip it out of the ground when I spied one slender green shoot. Now, six weeks later, with a bit of water and sun, it’s covered with new branches, fresh green leaves and a few small buds.
Through the light of Christ, the gift of the Atonement even the most dry, dusty, thorny life will burst forth into fields of blossoms, armfuls of bouquets. Maybe, probably, not until Christ comes again. But keep planting the seeds, nurturing the soil, praying for rain.
Christ will come.