Happy New Year and Welcome Back to the blog at Garden in Delight.
The winter season finds gardens flourishing—in the imagination and mind’s eye of their gardeners, that is! While bees might not yet be buzzing, new ideas and curious pursuits hum in gardeners’ hearts; ground may be bare and empty, yet seed catalogs fill mailboxes, offering images of flower frenzies and new vegetable varieties, teasing the taste buds. The time for creating gardens is always! Especially in winter’s sheltered moments, pausing from garden work to ponder what to plant next, I find such delight in this poignant phrase from God’s Word:
…God…who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist.
Romans 4:17 NRSV
Draw deeper into this commanding claim on creativity with alternate translations:
…Who God is. He makes the dead live again. He speaks, and something is made out of nothing.
Romans 4:17 New Life Version (NLV)
—the God who gives life to the dead and calls into being things that were not.
Romans 4:17 New International Version (NIV)
…the God who gives life to the dead and who creates something out of nothing.
Romans 4:17 New Century Version (NCV)
…what only God could do: raise the dead to life, with a word make something out of nothing.
Romans 4:17 The Message
God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were.
Romans 4:17 King James Version (KJV)
O gardener, witness the power! Feel the move of creativity, the fast force of fruitfulness, the rush of possibility-turned-reality as you plan what will become your garden. Yes, King James…patches of our yard “be not,” or rather “be dirt” for now! We await sunshine’s linger in longer days and splashes of intermittent rain showers to coax bulbs and seeds into blooms and fruit, calling the garden into being.
All of these reverberate the originating, glorious Word and enigmatic description which commenced all creation:
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.
Everything we do, gardeners, resonates and remembers this tremendous initiation, this marvelous invitation, in some small way, an advancing fractal through us, God’s image-bearers that plays out over and over again in our gardening—
growing plants into existence that once were not,
creating garden places of beauty and tranquility that once were not,
transforming vegetable vitality from once a vacant lot.
Time to fill a pot!
Relish these last weeks of winter, dear gardener, giddy with the allure of what will happen next, of what will spring into being that for now, is not.
“You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.”
Revelation 4:11 NIV
Photo Credits: ©2018 Shelley S. Cramm