They Speak More Eloquently Than Ten Thousand Tongues

As I sit here at my desk this morning, with three feet of snow covering my deck and more falling in fat flakes from the sky, gardening is probably the last thing I expected to consider when I woke up today.  But it’s funny how things happen sometimes... the path it takes to get me there, and the ways a word of spring can be spoken into the winter recesses of my heart. I needed that word. Garden.  It’s a perfect word for me, which will be plainly obvious if you take the briefest glimpse over my website.  But lets dig deeper than photography. What is it exactly... that I want this garden to be? What seeds do I want to sow?  What do I want to nurture here now that I have readied it for planting?  How will I find time (and what is my motivation) to plant, water and pull the weeds so that the harvest is plentiful?

My Prayer For This Garden

I remember when my middle son first started gardening.  He's got his mother's heart.  He sees well past imperfection and tends most carefully to those plants that are not doing so well, turning brown at the edges, drooping from lack of love and commitment, maybe having spent far too much time neglected on a shelf absorbing nothing more than false fluorescent light. He loves those plants most of all.  When he was in preschool, his teacher told me that he had a gift for tending to those children who were on the fringes, and had trouble feeling like a part of the group.  Even at that young age, I think there was a calling on his life. Similar to the calling on mine.  Compassion.  We both have a heart for the broken-hearted.

Garden.  

What an exciting word, full of possibility and focus.  Now is the time to plant this garden of compassion.  I love photographing flowers.  But when I really stop to think about it, the garden I love most, consists of faces.  Incredibly beautiful, emotional, imperfect, striving, wilting, thriving, glorious, fragrant, colorful, varied human faces.

Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
— John 15:13

Watering the Garden...

God Hears Amen Wherever We Are

It occurs to me this morning that we say goodbye to them in small ways. In much the same way that we said hello. 

We let go of their tiny hands when they head into that pre-school for the first time and we sit outside in the parking lot counting minutes until we can take them home.

Then we take them to kindergarden and we let them go again.. another small move toward a larger experience.

We watch as they create their first painting, read their first word, take their first small step.

And every one of those small moments gets stored up in our hearts in a big way.

When he was small, he'd get up with his dad, eat breakfast and watch Sesame Street in the small hours of the morning.

It was just the three of us at the time… such a small family but full of contentment.

He would crawl into bed with me and his small hand would steal into mine, as he read Shel Silverstein poems to me in that little voice that sounded just like Mickey Mouse.

When he was small his dad would carry him on his shoulders, but now.. he carries him on his heart.

God bless mommy and match box cars
God bless dad and thanks for the stars
God hears "Amen," wherever we are
And I love you....

I cherish every one of those small moments that adds up to who he is today.  To the world, he is all grown up now.  But to his mother, he is still a small boy...

Large... full of love and life.  That's no small thing.

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