My seed catalogs begin to arrive usually the second week of January; a time I welcome the glossy pages of Aztec yellow marigolds, bronze sunflowers, scarlet tomatoes, and all hues of basil. The flower and vegetable color wheel stands in stark contrast to the bleak view of my Mid-Atlantic mud encrusted pasture, which rarely sees snow just messy rain. So I grab the catalogs and retreat to some corner of the couch and etch out lists of flowers, herbs, and vegetables. I build a plan. What will I try this year for the Farmer’s market, golden cherry tomatoes, zesty Thai basil? What new shades will I add to the panorama of our garden bouquet, might we try cherry Rudbeckia, fragrant speckled pink, sweet peas, or that dazzling new variety of giant zinnia? Nothing curbs my enthusiasm, not even the low germination rate of some of the varieties I selected. Not even the miniscule size of the seeds. I welcome the horticulture challenge because gardening is a passion of mine. Summer sweat soaked brow, soil stained nails, brittle palms are marks of a passionate gardener. But then I ask myself, would I pack my passion in a suitcase, leave my clean, uncluttered, well planned garden to sow seeds in a dry, malnourished plot of land (II Corinthians 9:10).
IN HIS HEART A MAN PLANS HIS COURSE,
BUT THE LORDS DETERMINES HIS STEPS
Proverbs 16:9 (NIV)
My 2013 Gardener’s planning sheet still blank as I contemplate the arrangement of specific small crops of flowers and herbs. But these are my plans for my simple flower garden, hoping for it to churn out a few nickels at the farmer’s market— that my passion and labor pay off.
But the image of women in Haiti traversing the road to get water from the well and balancing it back to their bower to satiate thirst and perhaps to moisten their earthen patch of seeds and am reminded of the words written by Matthew Henry, ‘”But let men devise their worldly affairs ever so politely, and with ever so great a probability of success, yet God has the ordering of the event, and sometimes directs their steps to that which they least intended.
photo image by Google