I choose you.
I dug you up and moved you.
I knew you would take over, I knew you would spread and thrive in my garden.
You are greedy, feeding, chocking indiscriminately you grow.
Excluding light, depriving nourishment, yet I let you grow.
I choose you. I planted you.
I have spent the morning weeding my garden. One particular troublesome plant took up most of my time. It’s a plant that I desired and wanted. I knew it was a bad idea when I planted it. My want was bigger than my horticulture knowledge. My want was bigger than the hours needed to maintain this thug of a plant.
Removing and reducing this plant I was suddenly stuck how it was like forgiveness.
The plant was a problem that I was able to deal with. It has to be dealt with otherwise it will outgrow and destroy my garden.
It will stop other plants fruiting, it will prevent seeds from forming, it will overpower.
Kneeling in the garden digging out its invasive roots the power of Gods grace was overpowering.
That connectedness to the soil, to life and how fragile it can be. How much we need to nurture and hold creation.How God is in everything we do.
Removing this plant, decreasing its size, is not about control. It’s about acknowledging it’s spreading nature. Understanding that its roots run deep. It’s a woodland plant not really suitable for the garden. It’s doing what it was created for, to grow and survive.
In reducing its size I make space for light and fresh growth.
Reducing this plant was totally for my benefit ( not the plants ) Just as forgiveness is not for the other person but for me. Forgiveness gives me space, that allows me to grow. Forgiveness removes the choking thoughts and emotions, it breaks me free from the roots that trap me. Forgiveness allows light and warmth back into my life. Forgiveness is not an emotion but a choice that I must make. As with the gardening, it’s a choice.
My plant will keep coming back, keep trying to take over my garden. I will never stop having to reduce it. Just as all my life I will need to turn to God and ask for forgiveness. Without forgiveness, my heart will harden and I will fail to trust and see the beauty that surrounds me.
Matthew 18:21-22 The Message (MSG)
21 At that point, Peter got up the nerve to ask, “Master, how many times do I forgive a brother or sister who hurts me? Seven?”
22 Jesus replied, “Seven! Hardly. Try seventy times seven.
Day 27 – Lent Challenge – Fear.
Children who have experienced instability, frightening events, or inconsistent care build foundations of fear.
Beliefs which come from a foundation of fear tend to be negative, such as:
• I can’t trust adults to take care of me
• I have to be in control to stay safe
• It’s not safe to love or be vulnerable
Children with such negative core beliefs often have concerning behaviours such as stealing, lying, defiance, etc.
As a foster carer it’s our job to understand these behaviours. We look beyond the fear to the child that is hurt, confused sad and afraid.
They are afraid to love. This blog is for one young person who’s fear of love turned my world upside down.
God prepared me for this. In that preparation I understood this child acted out if fear. It was not personal, they were not to blame.
I understood that fear and love could not co exist. I knew the only way forward for me was to trust God and stay with love.
Love came with understanding and forgiveness. I felt so loved. In the darkness it was love that removed doubt, gave hope and purpose.
The fear this young person felt was contagious. It spread to others they pulled away.
Logic and reason was replaced by fear. The fear of making a bad error of judgement.
Those that came alongside us and walked us through our pain held and loved us. Their love came from God not fear. They listened with love. They prayed for us and with us,
held and surrounded by love.
Love does not take away the pain that fear causes. Love does not stop fear trying to destroy your life. Love does not have the answers.
Gods love gave us a future and hope. Gods love stopped the pain becoming fear. Gods love gave us focus through the blur and numbness.Gods love was supporting and always their.
I have learnt to put my trust in God. That trust gave me the strength to cope with the devastation left by fear.
My life is reflected in my garden. Everything that’s in my life is in my garden. I will try and explain this in another blog it’s deeply complicated and hard to put into words.
This weekend I shared my garden with the public. Opening my garden gate to strangers to wonder round and take from it what they will.
The whole experience was emotionally exhausting. I deeply feel it’s selfish to keep what you have to yourself. Opening my garden is a way to share what’s inside of me.
Until recently I had no other way to express this other than through my garden. No other way to tell and share with others what I find so wonderful.
Inspiring words from the weekend.
Full of charter
Nature at its best
Spending the weekend sharing my garden was such a positive experience . But my thoughts and prayers today were for those affected by last nights attacks in London.
Visitors took time to light candles and share their thoughts and prayers.
See how nature – trees, flowers, grass – grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence . . . We need silence to be able to touch souls. ~Mother Teresa
Another day when I don’t have the words to express deep sadness in our beautiful world.
House work is a good place to use my emotional energy. Plan was to remove all the books from the book case; dust the books, clean the shelves, refill the bookcase.
The first shelf uncovered a little black book that had fallen through the bookcase. Reaching in between the shelves I found a beautiful old bible.
It was totally unfamiliar to me, opening the inside cover I read the soldiers prayer printed on the inside front cover.
The mystery of its owner was soon solved, written in the back cover in the owners hand the date 1919 and the name of my husbands Grandfather.
World war one soldier that fought in the war to end all wars.
Reading the soldiers prayer again it gave me some of the words I could not find “think wisely, speak rightly, resolve bravely, act kindly, live purely, support us in life and comfort us in death.
My prayers tonight are for Manchester
Day 28 – refresh – lent challenge
Running in the rain.
Black clouds fill the sky
Cold air brushes by.
You can feel it’s going to rain
It’s going to pour
I love the rain
Darkened clouds and large rain drops
Smelling the inviting air
Stepping out into the rain
Liberating refreshing running in the rain,
Natures strength is in the rain
Pelting against my face
Puddles splashing as I run
Mouth open catching rain drops one by one .
Smiling running though the rain
Running takes away the pain
Running crying in the rain.
My tears are hidden as they roll
Tear drop puddles mixed with rain
Running is my therapy
Place to anger and to be me
Rain dilutes and waters down
Calms me and helps me understand
Colours change from dark to light
Multi colour smile shines so bright
promise of sunshine after rain
Peace after pain
Running praying in the rain.
By it’s a beautiful world .