I’m a novice in the garden. Fact is, I pretty much despise the whole lawn mowing, weed pulling, get your grass looking good thing. If I had my way, I’d let the lawn grow year round and call it a sanctuary for all things great and small, where weeds, bugs, bunnies, thistles, birdies, and groundhogs could all live free…
They could all call their friends over for dinner parties and I wouldn’t care. They could have their own version of Woodstock revisited. (I can see the bunnies dancing now!) If I had my way. But I don’t. So once or twice a year I attack my front yard with everything I’ve got. (Sorry, Bunnies.)
This year it was time to edge the sidewalk.
OMGGG (OhMyGoshGollyGee), I thought I’d die. 96 degrees. Sun beating me to death. Neighbors looking out the windows.
What’s he doing now with that snow shovel?
What is that thing, a wheel barrel?
Maybe time to get a new one.
My old, wheel-barrel-looking-thing once belonged to mom and dad. I’m 62, dad is 94 so the two-wheeled cart must be some kind of stone age antique. But it all worked out. The edger cut the grass. With the snow shovel I scooped up the clumps of dirt and grass and dumped them into the cart. I sort of felt like an idiot – wielding a snow shovel, an old fashioned corn straw broom, and mom and dad’s ancient, rusted garden cart with a broken wheel.
But, it kind of touched me in a weird way. This ancient cart that mom and dad used when they had a house once sat quietly by in the basement back home; then in the shed; then it moved to their new house; and somehow (dad brought it over?) to my garage. I didn’t ask for it. I didn’t want it. I really knew nothing at all about it until today. Today when I needed it. There it was. The perfect tool to make this chore a little easier.
Maybe that’s what baptism is like; and faith; and prayer; and Sunday school; and growing up in a family of God. When you know you need something more than binge watching a Netflix series (Archer, Orange is the New Black, Breaking Bad) God calls you back. When you know sitting on the porch with a glass of wine in your hand is good but not quite good enough, it just might be something old that’s new again, reminding you (reminding me) that God is not our enemy. That God has been patiently waiting for us to rejoice in old fashioned things like forgiveness, new life and yes, salvation.
I still pretty much hate yard work. And I truly wish my neighbors would stop mowing for a season or two—just long enough so my place wouldn’t so bad. But until then, I kind of have a special place in my heart for that old garden cart and I’ve got to chuckle because dad hates the whole lawn thing too. But, he got me to church. And somewhere in heaven mom is smiling I’m sure. Broken wheel and all, that cart reminded me how very blessed I am to have God reaching out to me (to us) in the most peculiar ways; ordinary ways; to bring us home where we belong.