"Let the gratefulness overflow into blessing all around you. Then, it will be a really good day." Louie Schwartzberg
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"God Lives in My Garden" -- a Poem from a Friend

posted by Susan Dominikovich on , , , ,


I have invited my friend Phillippa Kingi to share with you all a Beautiful thing today.

A couple of weeks ago I caught up briefly with Phillippa, who I hadn't seen in awhile.  We chatted easily and soon shared a separate but similar spiritual experience over the same verses in the Bible.  It was a God-thing.  It was a lovely, affirming, comforting thing.  I love that God is so interested in the details like that.  She went on to share that she meets with God in her garden a lot these days.  I told her I meet with God in my writing and in my music, and when I walk and when I read.  But I remembered that I used to meet with God in my garden too.  In that moment I realised that I missed that.

Another friend has been inspired to get into her garden too.  I went along with her to the garden centre one day and while she filled her trolly with little things that promised much beauty, I chose a few bits and pieces to put in my basket.  They also were beautiful things, but I knew that my garden needed a lot of preparation before I could put much in it.

And then stuff happened.  I have learnt that stuff will happen, and it's how you deal with stuff that is the test.   I realised, I needed to dig.  I got up early on Monday morning.  I put on my grubby clothes, grabbed the hoe, the spade, the wheelbarrow, and while I dug away furiously at stubborn weeds and hard earth, the rest of the family left me alone.  I made good progress with those weeds and that earth.  I even lay out some compost and eventually, after much effort, I was able to plant the few things I had bought.  It was satisfying.  It was right.  It was beautiful.  And I met with God during every sweaty dirty minute of it.  

So I texted my friend Phillippa, "I am digging in my garden today."  She understood.  

Yesterday she came and visited me for a cuppa and a long chat.  Again we shared verses that were meaningful and brought light into my living room.   

And she shared with me her heart.  

By that I mean that she gave me a copy of something she had written but never published.  She knew it would mean something for me.  She has been writing a lot.  Notebooks full.  And I read her beautiful poem and I saw her heart and immediately recognised her courage.  We make ourselves vulnerable even just to ourselves when we create.  It is a huge step to share it with another.  The words she had written touched my soul and encouraged me hugely.  They spoke for me too.

And now she has given me permission to publish on her behalf, in the hope that her words might go beyond the original page on which they were written and encourage someone else (or many someones, as I suspect).  She is taking a huge step in vulnerability with her talent but her writing is a true and inspired gift...one that deserves to be unwrapped and shared.  I hope to see more of it soon.  

This is Phillippa's poem.  If it touches you as it has touched me, please share it.

"God Lives in My Garden"

God lives in my garden
I find Him there often
Speaking to me in the peacefulness
Not judging
Not condemning
Just woo-ing gently, speaking softly
Enticing my fingers into the life-giving earth
Sometimes he reminds me of new life 
As buds burst forth into their glory

Sometimes he roars loudly 
Like the stormy wind blowing in the trees
He warms my back with the sun
Cools me with a rain shower
He enriches me, feeds me
Sometimes he speaks through the deep-throated contentedness 
of the chickens as they forage for insects in the freshly dug soil.

I see myself in my garden too
In the stubbornness of buttercups
And the persistence of wandering Jew
I have no plan for my evolving garden 
I follow the seasons, my heart
I know that God delights in my garden
In all the scruffiness
Its non-style
The co-existence of plants and weeds
Tidiness, messiness

He knows that my garden reflects me
He loves the way it evolves
The happiness of children playing there
Visitors conversing there
I know God lives in my garden
I meet him there often
He coaxes out of me things hidden deep
Teaches me things I need to know
Reminds me of things I have forgotten
He sings to me in the complex song of the Tui

He is always constant
And yet mysteriously changing
I know God lives in my garden
And it's my favourite place.

("God Lives in My Garden" copyright Phillippa Kingi)


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