Carrie L. DeAtley

For the Love of Nature

Nature is so important to me. It is our god-given responsibility to nurture the earth, and take care of what’s around us. Even though gardening has become more difficult as I age, it is still such a large part of who I am: To feel the dirt on my hands and to celebrate the worms living their. To enjoy the beauty of the flowers, the patterns of the leaves, and even the thorns on those pesky little roses. Nature gives us life in so many different ways, feeding our stomachs, our minds, and even our souls. It might just be the closest thing to magic that we have before us.

And yet we have come to disrespect the land we live on, and we disrespect the very thing that brings us life. We cut down trees to put down pavement. We poison the ground so nothing can grow. I wonder what the Lord will say when we stand before him in heaven. Will I have honored him by honoring the things he created?

My garden is a connection to God, the wonderful Yahweh. I feel closer to him when I walk the grounds around my house, even when I take the dog out to do his little-doggy business. I give thanks for the beauty in the sturdy trees, of their mangled bark rising high into the sky, their limbs shading me from the hot sun. I appreciate the grass beneath my feet, the clover and heal-all mixed in to make life just a little more interesting. I enjoy the lilacs planted by my truly wondrous helper, and the apple trees, pruned by my husband, now flowering with pink and white blossoms.

The seasons come and go, and my garden changes. Sprouts emerge from the ground as the wriggle their way toward the warm sun. Their flowers open wide to welcome the bees, spreading their scents and pollen into my nose. Achoo! Oh, but how fragrant they are, and how much I love them. Even as much as I love them, I know it won’t always stay this way. A plant will die or get crowded out, or that pesky gopher will make them its lunch. This is how everything goes: the ground before us changes just like the wind will blow from the south, or from the north. And yet, it is always beautiful. From the death of a plant sprouts a new one, and maybe it will be bigger! It reminds me how easy it really is to give thanks even when things seem like they should be bleak. Below the surface, something truly marvelous is at work.

So I tend to my garden, and my garden tends to me.


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One Response

  1. My dearest friend, I so admire who you are as a gardener, horsewomen and daughter of God! You are my inspiration!

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