We could all use a little glimpse of something brighter and more colorful today.

As many of you know, I love my garden. I actually think that love might be an inadequate word in this case. It’s like the garden is an extension of me.

I have only been digging in the dirt for four years, so this is a fairly recent but consuming passion. At first I approached it so tentatively, concerned about perfection and failure. Now, I do it with abandon.

Every year, I try to find ways to pack more and more flowers and plants in. I’m taking over the yard (sorry to my boys, but with all of the shade we have, it’s not like our grass is a worthy endeavor), so much so that my dad affectionately calls it my forest.

Seed catalogs have started arriving at my house. Soon I will put one of my old light therapy boxes to work starting seeds in the basement. It’s such a hopeful gesture to start baby plants in this snow-covered landscape. I now understand that if I lived somewhere without these dramatic weather shifts, I would have fewer reminders of what I can and cannot control. The seasons and the rhythms of the earth provide an amazing setting for miracles to occur. In my garden I find daily, tangible reminders that God is sustaining the earth and can make all things new.

I discovered Vigen Guroian (an Armenian theologian/ professor and gardener) and I am really enjoying his book, Inheriting Paradise: Meditations on Gardening. Here’s a little taste:

When the earth is still damp and cold with melted snow, I kneel at the edge of the perennial bed beseeching the first green blades of the crocuses and daffodils to grow. I drift into my vegetable garden and rake off last year’s withered vines. I look down at the dead gray shoots of the asparagus row and try to imagine how in a month’s time splendid green spears will break through the mounded earth.

For the gardener the first signs of spring are an irresistible invitation to make the earth a Paradise once more. Gardening and the spiritual life are very much alike.

Here, let’s have a glimpse together of what will surely be…in just a few months. Hang in there, friends.