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This is the way I like to picture myself when I'm gardening!

Ecclesiastes 3:1-2

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted.

This was the sermon I heard today on this beautiful Sunday.  No, I missed church this morning but when I stepped outside, I figured I would do what the Amish call, “God’s work.”  I bedded my garden down for the Winter.

As I pulled all the weeds that crept up in the cold weather we’ve been having, I remembered pulling the weeds during the warm and hot weather between the tomatoes and zucchini.  I remembered the back-breaking work that I did to start the garden in the Spring and how I stood back afterwards realizing that I had actually shoveled all the grass out by hand.  (I didn’t have a vehicle big enough for a tiller to fit in at that time.)  I remembered the first tomato coming in and the anticipation of when it would be ripe enough to eat with tuna fish!  My boys watched the watermelons grow and prayed the raccoons didn’t eat them before we could.

This would be one of my boys with the rewards!

As much as I remembered the good part of the garden, I also remembered the lessons I learned throughout this season of what will be changed next year.  We were devastated when we came out one morning and the deer had decided to eat, or at least taste, all ten of the tomato plants and the fruits it produced for us.  I learned to definitely put a fence up next year.  I also learned that no one around here really likes to help me with weeding the big garden, but they sure do love eating the vegetables that come from it.  I think next year I’ll implement a “weeding” schedule with the boys.

I was alone out there with my iPod, a metal rake and my two hands.  Bend down, pull the weeds, and throw them out of the garden.  This is the routine all gardeners have to do from time-to-time.  Once that was done, I pulled all the plants and placed them in the garden to decompose and re-gift the ground with the nutrients they hold.  Lastly, I placed a healthy layer of leaves over the whole area so they can decompose, as well as keep weeds out before I till the ground next Spring.  Step-by-step, I watched my garden transform into a big area that was bear and leaf laden.  I stood back several times and just admired the hard work, but also reminisced about the hard work and beauty of the garden throughout the Spring and Summer.

Even though our weather is beautiful today, I understand that to everything there is a season and that a garden is God’s way of reminding us of this.  Now that the garden is done, I believe I will do the same and “bed” myself down for the Winter months and remember that the Spring will be here in its good timing.  As a matter of fact, I believe I’ll sit right here, watch the football game and make myself a nice, warm scarf!