Ever since my brother and I got to drive home (from OK) together, I have had a recurring prayer. More like a theme I would say, that runs through my prayers and my spirit. A prayer for water, spiritual water, physical water. Any kind of water. Rainwater. Clean water. Drinking water. I don’t know. Just WATER. On a side note I really feel like the Holy Spirit might have nudged me, or directed my attention to this desire. Perhaps it was there already but I had not recognized it, or named it. So this thirst is something I have only recently been conscious of.
My mom and dad taught me (us) many things, but one most important lesson: how to carry an eternal spring within yourself so that no matter the desert, you can flourish. They taught us about eternal life. And then, as a thirsty, or perhaps over-watered?? little seedling, I left home. My path brought me here, to New Mexico, a literal desert. And in the past 12 years I have experienced a spiritual drought, apparently self-imposed. Why? Did I not want to flourish? All of a sudden a mental picture flashed in my mind of a young plant with a large wound to the stem. And the stem had turned soft and pulpy and was decaying. I’ve done this to my own plants accidentally, forgetting to be gentle with tender stems and leaves while pruning or something. They don’t always die, I’ve even taped together a stem that broke clean in two (it grew new roots at the broken joint instead of gluing back together, being too far down in the dirt). But a big wound can kill it, and it is best to just take off the broken pieces with a clean cut.
Tangent thought: As believers, are we like succulents? Storing precious water within ourselves to survive the world? Some succulents can completely lose their roots to rot but regrow them, plus entirely new plants, from the leaves alone. Have we also the ability to do this, because of eternal life in Christ? I think yes. This is my String of Pearls succulent a few weeks ago.👇🏼
Was I wounded by my parents divorce like a young plant, and like a succulent my roots needed to shrivel up to heal? Did I need to go to the desert until life squeezed enough water out of me that I grew new ones? Or until I realized how thirsty I was? Ha! I didn’t just grow roots, I grew two kids – my baby pearls! Which brings to mind something I said to my dad a few weeks go. I told him I was growing these String of Pearls plant for God🙂
Do you see all the tiny newbies it’s growing? It hangs underneath a skylight in my kitchen, soaking up bright light from above all day long. I think it’s pretty happy there. I’ve thrown many of my pearls before the swine (see Matthew 7:6, and remind me to talk about what those pearls were, and when I first saw things in my life as “pearls”), and yet God continues to bless me. In honor of all my second chances I am cultivating new pearls here, and I hope they thrive just like my little family is thriving! I don’t just hope, I know they will because I am watering them, lol, and they have good light, and I’m paying attention to make sure it stays ok. I have a plan to rotate the pearls once a week, and see if the tender shoots will grow faster because I’m forcing them to search for light in a new direction every week.
I like to make up analogies and draw connections between things in my mind. Everything in life is like a connect-the-dots game to me, and it’s fun to find the similarities. So in my newfound appreciation of growing things, I see a lot of similarities between my life and gardening. And every time that I think of one of these little analogies, I also go “Oooh…maybe this is what that scripture means!” (for example, remind me to talk about how to handle weeds in my grass and how that relates to the parable of the farmer). It seems that even years before I knew what I needed or would need, God was already busy sending it my way.
He knew I would get into gardening (amongst 1,324 other hobbies). And He knew I would be spiritually thirsty. So He sent me Travis, whose skills and upbringing perfectly balance mine. I spent my childhood learning how to build a heavenly home, and Travis spent his learning how to build one right here on earth. What each of us brings to the table is exactly what the other needs to eat. I think so, anyway. Which is why my String of Pearls plant belongs to Him, a little way I can say thank you and pay it forward. ☺️