Call in the Master Gardener


Last year was the best year I ever had with my garden.

Things grew that I forgot I had planted. It was one surprise after another.

Even the grape vine was full of leaves and the vine wrapped itself around the pergola making for a very romantic setting.

Bulbs blossomed. Rose bushes grew profusely. The tall ornamental grasses lined the walkway adding a perfect accent at just the right turns.

I held baby rabbits, baby birds and even a baby squirrel in my hand for the first time ever.

I had eight fish and twelve frogs in my pond.

I had butterflies of all types, hummingbirds and for the first time blue birds visited my little piece of Heaven.

I had all kinds of praise for the Master Gardener.

We had a very cold winter here in northeastern Pennsylvania. I really didn't mind the cold, but apparently my garden did.

I waited eagerly for the magic to happen all over again.

I waited for signs of Spring and it just wasn't happening.

I can remember letting the dogs out each morning and glancing around the yard I saw nothing but dead grass and brown bushes.

People began posting pictures of flowers I knew I had, but mine just weren't coming back.

Then one day I decided to look closer.

Three fir trees were dead.

A Red maple dead.

Two rhoddodendren bushes I just planted last year were dead.

Even the ornamental grasses were thin and not recovering.

Then I discovered three more plants and a beautiful butterfly bush all were dead.

There's an old story about a pastor who decided to visit one of his parishioners.

Upon arriving there the minister discovered his host was an avid gardener, and was only too happy to show his pastor around the garden, a beautiful sea of greens, purples, blues, whites, yellows and pinks. Wanting to set the relationship off on a strong, positive note, the pastor said, "Praise God for the beauty of His handiwork".

But his host replied in a somewhat offended tone, "Now pastor, don't go giving all the credit to God. You should have seen this garden when He had it to himself!"

Well, I have learned the hard way that God gives us the space to grow, but it is up to us to nurture, feed, protect and maintain what He has given us.

Not only in the garden, but in life.

I just assumed that everything that was perfect would be perfect again.

I figured if God blessed me with such a magnificent garden last year He would do it again.

I should have known better.

My life changed dramatically last year. I believe in my heart that God did help me to get through my first garden alone. So, He made it better than it ever was and turned it over to me.

The result is I have been digging up all of the dead plants and bushes. I have been trimming back the things I think may have a chance.

Maybe your life is like my garden. Maybe you just were spoiled by how great things were when you asked Him to help you. Then when things looked wonderful you simply ingored Him and took the credit. You thought you had it all figured out.

Now you and I are standing here wondering what happened.

Well, my friend, it's not too late. There is still plenty of time to grow. There are seeds to be planted, old dead dreams to be cleared away and much work to be done to reap the benefits of a good harvest.

Don't give up on the gardener, just call the Master Gardener for guidance.

This will most likely be my last year in this garden so I will make the best of it.

Let's grow together.

Bob Perks

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