1349. Before the seed there comes the thought(promise) of bloom. ~Adapted line by E. B. White 

I can hear, underground,
that sucking and sobbing,
In my veins, in my bones I feel it,–
The small water seeping upward,
The tight grains parting at last.
When sprouts break out,
Slippery as fish,
I quail, lean to beginnings, sheath-wet. ~
Theodore Roethke

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The dictionary defines a promise as: 1.) a declaration that something will or will not be done or given and 2.) an express assurance on which expectation is to be based. Therefore, it seems to me that seeds declare and express assurance of what the Lord has done and given, and as such is a promise of what we as His children can expect. For the mention of seeds and their promise is made on the third day of the Genesis story where we can see that plants and trees are manifestations of a sacred and prescribed “seed force.” The roots of this ordained and holy “seed force” reach down into the darkness of the earth’s “concealed depths,” and therein they are sustained by water. That’s why in the Celtic tradition the moisture in earth’s soil is a “symbol of the waters of God that enfold and infuse all things.” Not only that but as J. Philip Newell says, “everything that was born in the great matrix of life is sustained by roots that reach into the deep mystery of God’s life.” In so doing we mortals can see God’s goodness, deeper than any evil, at the inception of Creation and in the heart of all life.

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from my hand into the wind
one clings
as if to say there is in me
something yet to be
~Jeanne Emrich

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Earth teach me to forget myself as melted snow forgets its life. Earth teach me resignation as the leaves which die in the fall. Earth teach me courage as the tree which stands all alone. Earth teach me regeneration as the seed which rises in the spring. ~William Alexander

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And the sower going forth to sow sets foot into time to come…Like a tree, he has given roots to the earth, and stands free. ~Wendell Berry

Then God said, “Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.” And it was so. The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. ~Genesis 1:11-12  ✝

**All photos of seeds and seed pods taken by Natalie; all collages created by Natalie.

1327. I must have flowers, always, and always. ~Claude Monet

Flowers seem intended for the
solace of ordinary humanity.
~John Ruskin

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Last weekend one of my grandsons went with me to do our grocery shopping. When I told him to stop a minute at the floral department, he asked if I bought flowers every week, and I replied with a boisterous “yes.” That made him chuckle at first; then he became curious and asked me why. I replied with Monet’s exact declaration above. Since then I’ve been contemplating why I have that compelling need but have been able to come up little more than that they are beautiful, they cheer me up, and they are fun to replicate with a camera or on a canvas. Since I’m not much of an artist however, a camera and editing programs are much more able to help me create good images than those I try to achieve with paints or pens. Not only that, because I’m one of those people who has a persistent and irresistible urge to find beauty and be creative, even the tiniest of flowers can satisfy both those needs.

Passions, who can say from whence they come
or why, but I for one am glad there’s solace,
comfort, and joy to be found in them, for ‘tis they
that bringeth the light needed to make it through
the dark nights of my soul, and it’s evident that the
Lord of heaven and earth whom I adore and seek
finds them to be so as well for one learns much of
Him and His heart in the Genesis account of Creation.

There is no atom in earth but is alive and astir in the all-penetrating splendor of God. From the infinitesimal to the infinite, everything is striving to express the thought of His Presence with which it overflows. ~Lucy Larcom

For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse. ~Romans 1:20  ✝

**Photo taken by Natalie and the special effects and border were done by her on iPiccy

1195. Of the good in you I can speak, but not of the evil. For what is evil but good tortured by its own hunger and thirst? ~Kahlil Gibran

The whole course of human history
may depend on a change of heart
in one solitary and even humble individual –
for it is in the solitary mind and soul of
the individual that the battle between
good and evil is waged and
ultimately won or lost.
~M. Scott Peck

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At the end of each day in the Creation story in Genesis it says: “God saw that it was good.” And then after the 6th day it says: “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.” We are made in the image of God and so “at the heart of who we are is the love and wisdom of God.” “The divine likeness within us may be hidden or forgotten. It may be in terrible bondage by wrongdoing but the image of God remains at the heart of who we are, even though we may live at what seems an infinite distance from it.” (J. Philip Newell, THE BOOK OF CREATION) Why else would we blush or feel guilty about something we have done wrong? Unless of course something within us discloses its own goodness and disapproval of evil. We are witnessing on the world’s stage, horrific acts of evil that bombard us every day because of constant media coverage. Sadly many are fearful and losing heart. What we need to realize is that on any and all of those days, somewhere in the world man’s ability to be a mirror of God’s goodness is visible as well, but it’s is not researched or reported. Why? Money, money, money!

“The garden of God in which we have been created has not been destroyed. Nor has it been abandoned. We may live in a state of exile from in, but God forever dwells in that place and seeks our company. The Book of Genesis describes God as ‘walking in the garden at the time of the evening breeze’ and calling out ‘Where are you?’ The garden says, Eriugena, is our ‘human nature that was made in the image of God.’ God, he says, still walks in the garden of our souls searching for us…’” (J. Philip Newell, THE BOOK OF CREATION)

And the Lord God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil…” ~Excerpt from Genesis 3:22  ✝

For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. ~Excerpt from 1 Timothy 7:10  ✝

**Image via Facebook

1065. Let God’s promises shine on your problems. ~Corrie Ten Boom

February is a quiet month in the garden…
But just because it looks quiet
doesn’t mean that nothing is happening.
~Edited and adapted quote from
Rosalie Muller Wright

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The dictionary defines a promise as: (1. a declaration that something will or will not be done or given, or (2. an express assurance on which expectation is to be based. Isn’t is amazing that something as tiny as seeds declare what the Lord has promised, done, and given, and what we as His children can expect from His covenants. Special mention of seeds and their guarantee is made on the 3rd day in the Scriptural Genesis story. And the plants and trees God created have never failed to produce profuse manifestations of this “seed force” which has been been emerging for millions of years and comes forth yet from earth’s vegetation. The roots of this holy “seed force” reach down into the darkness of the earth’s “concealed depths.” Therein they are sustained by water, and in the Celtic tradition the moisture in earth’s soil was seen as a “symbol of the waters of God that enfolded and infused all things.” God’s goodness, which is deeper than any evil, can be seen then at the very inception of and at the heart of all life. J. Philip Newell puts it this way: “Everything that is born in the great matrix of life is sustained by roots that reach into the deep mystery of God’s life.” And I love the imagery these words paint of the seed and humanity’s roots reaching deep into our Maker’s life. What a comforting and safe place is the sheltering heart of Yahweh!

As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. ~Isaiah 55:10-11 ✝

**In the collage are a collection of seed pods I found in my winter garden.

819. My garden is a balancing act between weeds and wonders. ~Carol Stocker

Roots of the weed sucked first
life from the genesis of earth
and hold the essence of it still.
Always the weed returns; and
the cultured plant retreats before it.
~Beryl Markham

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They know, they just know where to grow,
how to dupe you, and how to camouflage themselves
among the perfectly respectable plants,
they just know, and therefore, I’ve concluded
weeds must have brains.
~Dianne Benson

Man oh man am I up to my “derrière” in weeds. After the huge amount of rain we had last spring, more weeds than ever sprang up, and they are EVERYWHERE. I was already losing the battle with them when we left for Europe on the 22nd of June; then after we got home nearly three weeks later, they had grown exponentially denser and bigger.

Sweet flowers are slow and weeds make haste. ~William Shakespeare

So in this awful heat I’ve been going out when I can to save my flowers from being overcome by their immensity and girth. However, since many have already dropped seeds that will lie dormant until next year, I’ve essentially already lost next year’s battle too. Oh well, if one wants beds and beds of pretty flowers and/or veggies, a weeding one must go, right?! But, ya know, it’s not so much the backbreaking work of pulling or digging them up that’s a problem; it’s this relentless, searing heat that sends me grumbling back in the house dripping with sweat from head to toe and in clothes that are wet down to my underwear.

By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust are you and to dust you will return. ~Genesis 3:19  ✝

677. Behold, my friends, the spring is come; the earth has gladly received the embraces of the sun, and we shall soon see the results of their love! ~Sitting Bull, Hunkpapa, Lakota holy man and tribal chief

Spring has returned.
The Earth is like a child
that knows poems
by heart.
~Ranier Maria Rilke

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The cycle of nature—the progress from seed to fruition
to dying-off and then renewal in the spring—
was mirrored in the wild fields and the cultivated garden alike,
while the fragility of harvest—the possible interruption of
the cycle by drought, wind, or other natural calamities—
established the pattern of how humans understood
the workings of the cosmos.  The oldest of surviving
sacred stories have their roots in the garden
and reflect how humanity sought to understand
the changeable patterns of their world and, at the same time,
to imagine a world no longer subject to change.
~Peg Streep

See! The winter is past…flowers appear on the earth; the season of singing has come, the cooing of doves is hear in our land. ~Song of Songs 2:11-12   ✝

**Image via Pinterest, text written by Natalie

329. Every April, God rewrites the Book of Genesis. ~Author Unknown

That God once loved a garden
we learn in holy writ.
And seeing gardens in the Spring
I well can credit it.
~Winifred Mary Letts

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There’s just something very reassuring about springtime, isn’t there? It tells us that what God put in place is still in place and that renewal is as much a part of life as anything else.  Death may be undeniable, but so is life.

Come rain and speak of rivers and seas and holy healing waters.
Rise sun and speak of nurturing warmth and holy grace.
Blossom flower and speak of beauty and holy mysteries.
Hum bee and speak of faithful and ordained holy purpose.
Sing bird and speak of joy and grateful thanksgiving.
Beat heart and speak of pulsing rhythms and coursing holiness.
Move breath and speak of God within and holy beginnings.
Walk feet and speak of the road to Emmaus and holy encounters.
Twinkle stars and speak of the void filled by God’s holy, life-giving hands.
Speak silence of the Ancient of Days who’s waiting to be heard.
Shine light, drive darkness away, and speak of Christ’s redemptive work.
Come love and speak of peace and sacred surrender.

Truth shall spring out of the earth; and righteousness shall look down from heaven. ~Psalm 85:11 ✝

Thank you, Lord Jesus, that you save, you heal, you restore, and you reveal Your Father’s heart to us! You have captured me with grace and I’m caught in Your infinite embrace!

**Photo via Pinterest.