At the beginning of my stay in the Hermitage,
I put some fresh grasses, flowers and foliage
in a jar on the Oratory windowsill.
The previous ones were indeed looking rather sad!
Other than enjoying their simple beauty,
I didn’t really look closely at them gain until the end of the week,
when I noticed that one stem, at least, was growing roots.
Now, there was a picture for me.
What things had God placed in my heart that week
that were beginning to take root?
And which of them would I take the trouble to “pot up”
and nurture into thriving plants?
We talk a lot about seed sowing and harvest,
but not so much about taking cuttings;
pulling the Truths from existing plants,
Words from the Word,
and giving them the time and conditions to sprout.
It takes time and the willingness of heart
to hold both the Water of Life and the Truth together,
in faith that they will produce something living
rather than a slimy stem!
It’s no good taking the stem out of the water after a couple of days
and saying, “Nothing’s happening!”
Neither is it any good leaving it in the jar for weeks,
forgetting to keep the water fresh.
It takes patience and attentiveness,
and the knowledge of when to challenge those new roots
with soil in a pot;
when to apply faith and walk out with baby steps
into what has begun to grow.
The Word mixed with Wisdom, Water and willingness
produces new growth that will eventually spill out to others;
maybe even to the point when they can pluck a sprig themselves
and set it to grow in their own hearts.
But the miracle of growth is all God’s;
it is He Who Spoke the Creative Word, right at the beginning,
it is He Who is the Author of Life,
it is He Whose Water is like no other,
it is He Who calls us into growth.
We cannot do it for ourselves,
we can only apply faith and hope and love
as each bit of the Kingdom takes root in our hearts.
May we be willing, day after day.
Copyright of all images and text belongs to Claire Gardner
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