Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Little Garden


Hey ya'll, as promised I am back to my blogging. I’m not sure if I can be quite as dedicated to it as I was before for the simple reason I just have too many other obligations right now. I’ve joined some local organizations and I'm dabbling in some other things. My classes and meeting take up four nights a week so I’ll just have to blog as time permits. I’m also VERY excited about the possibility of something else new in my life and I’ll share that with you as the time gets closer.

Several weeks ago I wrote a story and I thought I would share it with you guys. Maybe it will resonate more with some of you than it does others. :-) I hope you all enjoy it.

The Little Garden

Once upon a time there was a young man that was very sad and lonely. Every night as he went to bed he would pray to God that he would be given a way to share his love and he would cry himself to sleep in pain and loneliness. But God heard his prayers and unknown to him he was already in the process of making them a reality. For God knew of a tiny plot of land that was barren and unattended and in need of love and friendship. For years God listened as the tiny space of dirt called out to him. Dear Father, I am so alone. People pass by me daily and none even care to give me a second glance. I have so much to offer and I know I am capable of such great things if you will just send me the one that will believe in me and work with me to make it all happen.

One day a very wise woman passed the barren area; it was almost as if she sensed the pain coming from the land. She stopped to gaze at the area and spoke, just as if she knew the soil could hear her and said, “The one you are waiting for will come very soon and together you shall create the most beautiful garden filled with love, happiness and beautiful blooms. The garden cried out in such joy, in hope that the wise woman would hear. “How will I know when my gardener appears?” “You will recognize him by his smile,” she said. “When you see his smile you will know in your heart he is the one.”

A year and a half passed by and each day the uncared for piece of land patiently waited for the gardener to arrive. Then one day it happened, a young man walked onto the piece of earth and smiled the most beautiful smile and at that moment the voice of the Almighty spoke to the property and said, “He has prayed for you every night, he is the one you have waited for, I commit him to you and together you shall create a beautiful garden and your love shall prosper for a lifetime.

And so it was, for several years to come a great bond was formed between the neglected land and the gardener. The gardener planted the soil and cared for it and the little piece of land was so happy! The little garden thrived for its caretaker and produced beautiful blooms to show its love for the one that cared for it so deeply. For the first time since its existence the garden was happy. God had answered the little garden’s prayers and life was beautiful.

Then one day something very much unexpected happened. The garden eagerly waited for its darling gardener to come home. The sun had shown brightly that day and there were many beautiful blooms to show him. He will be so very proud thought the garden. But, the gardener never came. At that moment God spoke to the little garden. “Oh my beautiful little garden… I am so sorry… your gardener has abandoned you and I’m afraid he shall not return.” The garden cried out to God, “Why lord? I don’t understand. Why has my beloved gardener forsaken me? I tried so hard to show him how much I loved and cared for him! Were my blooms not bright enough? Were they too few? Dear, dear God, did I produce too many weeds? Was I too much work to care for? Was it because the butterflies were late coming and I could get their attention no sooner? Why God, why did he leave me when I tried so hard to please him? I don’t understand and I am in such great pain, my heart aches for my gardener to return. Please help me understand what I have done wrong so that I may get my gardener back.”

“My precious, precious child, human beings are very complicated creatures. I cannot say for certain that there is any one reason why your gardener has chosen to leave. Perhaps even he is not aware of the exact reason. Mankind is a very fragile species and sometimes their actions are related to things that may have happened long, long ago. The connection may not even be apparent to them. Sometimes the stress of daily living can cause their bodies and minds to become ill, only time will tell” said God. “But God,” said the garden, “did you not tell me he prayed for me every night and cried himself to sleep?” The Great I Am explained to the garden that he did in fact pray every night and cried himself to sleep. But, for whatever reason he does not remember and does not see that he has walked away from the very thing he begged God to bring into his life. God, now walking among the paths of the garden spoke, “I can tell from what the two you have created you loved each other very much. For the love I see here is a strong and glorious one. It must have been very difficult for him to walk away from something so beautiful. Much hard work and dedication has gone into this creation and it is not something he can soon forget.” “Will he come back to me?” asked the garden. “Perhaps,” said God. “Once he has a chance to realize that the relationship between the two of you was an answer to his prayers and that you were created just for each other and each of you was a gift for the other given by me. But, there is still a chance he may be unable to see that and he may never return.”

“God, I am afraid I shall grieve myself to death over the loss of my gardener and loving caregiver. For the hurt I feel is so strong the only way I know to stop it is to cease to exist. God I pray that you send others to remove me a small part at the time until I no longer remain and there will be no sign I was ever here. If I can not have my gardener then I no longer wish to survive.” This saddened the heart of God until he wept tears of sorrow. He made a promise to the garden that if its beloved caregiver did not return, another would recognize the great beauty it possessed and it would once again be the pride and love of someone else’s heart.

“Without care I shall perish, in no time at all I shall be over grown with weeds and I shall be forgotten.” said the garden. Others shall cross you path said the Lord and they shall help for they will recognize a great beauty is being lost. And, I will also be here.

The garden heard the words of God but they offered little consolation for the pain it was feeling. And just as it believed, it began to die. Leaves began to curl, stems began to turn brown and the garden waited for the last ounce of life to be drained. Just as God said, he was always there. As the garden tried to die of thirst he sent rain. As the flowers withered and died God sent the sun to draw more blooms from the plants and with the blooms came bees and butterflies. The butterflies laid eggs and new butterflies were born by the hundreds and inundated the garden. Until one day the garden realized that despite the great loneliness it was feeling after being abandoned by the gardener, it was never really alone and life continued. God was always there to give it what it needed when it needed it. Suddenly a peace came over the garden and it knew everything would be okay.

The garden realized at that point that even though the love of another may be gone, self love and self respect must always remain. With that also came the knowledge that many, many others loved and appreciated its beauty in addition to the one that had left. It found peace in the knowledge that one day it would once again be loved… be it by the one that created it with the blessing of God or by a new gardener that would love it even more… weeds and all.

--Randy Parker


Lisa at Greenbow said...

The garden has always been a place of solace for me Randy. Two divorces, two teenagers, losing a sibling and parent. The garden was always there waiting to embrace me, weeds and all. Always waiting for the other distractions to recede. Always there just as God is always there. I wish you peace.

Anonymous said...

Dear Randy, Lisa has said it so well, there is little I can add. The garden, like all of us, must learn to love itself and have faith that happiness can and will come to it. You are in my thoughts.


Phillip said...

Just remember that gardens are always forgiving and it will always be there for you. They can be very therapeutic.

Randy said...

The garden seems to be going to sleep early this year. It will have all winter to rejuvinate. From the looks of it you would thing the first frost has already come.

I think the little garden is well on it's way to finding peace and happiness... AND hope for the flowers. A garden must always sleep for a while to rest up for the powerful rebirth in the Spring. ;-)

Randy said...

Phillip, the hard part now is finding the time for the garden therapy!

Jan said...

I have found that my garden is such a healing place especially in times that seem so overwhelming. When I am most busy, that is the time I need to be outside the most. The garden in your story, like all of us, has to be patient that the right gardener will come by and appreciate it for itself.

Always Growing

Jan Goldfield said...

Randy, it is so great to see you here again. You were so missed. Your friends at GG ask about you and miss you as well.

Randy said...

Jan 1 and Jan 2,
Thanks for paying the blog a visit! It's always good to see you! :-)

tina said...

Welcome back! I love your story. So well written. Writing and gardening go hand in hand for me when I might be feeling a bit down. Sounds like the same for you too. The story was most beautiful and just shows us that hope and love prevail. Take care.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Hi Randy, What a neat story... Gardens are just fabulous--and are the answer for so much of life. They are total therapy. Hope you have time to work in the garden ---even during the busy times of life.

So glad you are BACK... I've missed you.

sweet bay said...

Randy I am glad you are back too! Gardens have almost magical powers of healing and can be surprisingly resilient.

Anonymous said...

A few lines from one of my favorite prayers.
I offer you my longing for shelter, Lord, as seasons change and I cannot see the promise of spring to lift my spirits, to blossom in beauty beyond what my heart knows how to trust. God bless you and your garden.
Linnie in Destrehan, LA

Gail said...

Dear Randy, It's good to have you back on line~~I love the healing power of gardens...just a few minutes in all that lush greenery and and we are feeling better. Isn't is marvelous that it does. gail

Randy said...

I'm really glad you enjoyed it and that you could also see the happiness in all the turmoil. There is always light at the end of a tunnel.

It's great to be back! I'm sure I can find the time to squeeze it in somewhere. :-)

I believe the garden might be done for this year. I had ice on my windshield this morning.

I think that's the most beautiful thing I've ever read... thank you.

My friend Patsy like to call it communing with the earth spirits.:-)

Wayne said...

That was a great story.

Dirt Princess said...

Wonderful! I love it! I find peace in my garden. Digging a hole, moving a plant, or whatver....it calms my soul. When my mother was undergoing chemo for breast cancer, she would come home after every treatment and work in her yard until it was dark. At that time I was in college, and came home on the weekends. I didnt garden at that time, nor did I have any desire. I never understood how she could do it, after just having a treatment. But now I get it....100%.

lynn'sgarden said...

This story made me cry! I think we can all relate that gardening is so much more than just 'planting'...it's food for the soul.
Beautifully written, Randy! ;)

Randy said...

I'm glad you liked it. :-)

Dirt Princess,
Gardens can be alot of therapy. You mother was ver wise to realize that. A certain Texas gardener told the same thing a couple of months ago. :-)

I'm glad your were so moved by the story. It's my hope that it touches the heart of several people. There is a very important lesson in it. There is a possiblity that it could be publishied in the very near future.

Jean said...

Randy, I'm so glad to see you back. That was a lovely story. Gardens are such wonderful healing magical places. I hope that come spring you'll have more time in your life for it. Take care.

Meems said...

Weeds and all... it's what love and gardens is all about. Where is the first place I run when anything in my life feels out-of-whack... it is to the peace and serenity of "creating MY eden". It is a great place to be alone. That is, just me and God. :-) You've been missed.

Tootsie said...

this is a great post! I have enjoyed the story!
have a great weekend

Anonymous said...

Words cannot express how profound, moving and thought provoking your short story is and was for me. I wish you the best in your new journeys. I look forward to seeing where your path takes you.

ritab said...

Randy, that is a wonderful story. I really miss you over at GG. Hope to see you around soon, Love,


gardenfrisk said...

We understand each other. A garden is more than greens, isn't it. It's life.

jodi (bloomingwriter) said...

Randy, I'm trailing along behind everyone, as usual. Your story made me cry. I wish you were here so I could give you a hug, give you some divisions from our garden, feed you some soup (it's the mother in me. Can't help it.

You've been missed in the blogosphere, including by me, errant blogger as I've been. There are always changes going on in our lives, and some of them are pleasant and others...not so much. But the garden tends to ground us, nurture our souls, give us strength. I hope that the coming weeks will be easier, and that you find your voice and come back to us soon. We miss you. (((((Randy))))

Jan said...

Just thought I'd stop by and wish you a Merry Christmas and let you know I am thinking about you.

Always Growing

Jake said...

I hope you had a Merry Christmas and will have a Happy New Year. My new blog is: Nelson Park Gardens, http://nelsonpg.wordpress.com/


FlowerLady said...

This was a beautifully written story that touches the heart. My gardens are great therapy for my heart, soul and body.

Wishing you well.


Southern Lady said...

Beautiful story! It is so true. God is always caring for our every need, even when we feel alone.