Planting Gardens

He has sent this message to us in Babylon:  It will be a long time.  Therefore build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce.” (Jeremiah 29:28)

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Gardening has become a passion of mine.  I love the idea of growing and consuming my own food.  I enjoy a couple hours of work tending the garden.  I like knowing where some of my food is coming from, and that it is not chemically produced.

As this passion of mine has developed, I have noticed that gardening is present in the Bible.  Of course we know that humanity started in the garden.  Jesus prayed in a garden before his death.  Jesus was mistaken for a gardener after his resurrection.  Upon reading through the Old Testament, I was reminded of how God commanded the Israelites to plant gardens.

Why would he do that?  What is the big deal with gardening?  Here are a couple of my thoughts.

1) It is a symbol of a commitment to a place.  God told the Israelites that it was going to be a long time that they were going to be in Babylon.  He basically told them to get used to it!  Planting a garden anchors us to where we are and to where God has us.

2) We reconcile with the Creator.  Since the industrial revolution, we have almost completely separated ourselves from the process of food production.  Within the past 50 years, people are eating in completely new ways compared to the thousands of years before.  Planting a garden reminds us of the incredible creation the God has made, and gives us a better understanding of the Creator.

3) It is reliance on God.  Working a garden takes hard work, but ultimately no gardener can grow the food.  The gardener is reliant on the seed, the soil, the climate, and the weather to produce a crop.  Gardening forces us to rely on God, the maker and giver of life.

Is God asking you to anchor down, reconcile, and rely on him?  Could planting a garden help facilitate that?

Blessings,

Josh

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