The one I love calls to me:
Arise, my dearest. Hurry, my darling.
Come away with me! I have come as you have asked
to draw you to my heart and lead you out.
For now is the time, my beautiful one.”
Songs of Songs 2:10
In the morning, LORD, you hear my voice;
in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.
It was a rainy Saturday morning and I was delighted with the invitation into my friend’s garden. Her tone was a little apologetic as she asked, “Do you want to help me pick green beans in the morning? I know it is supposed to be raining, but do you have a raincoat? Oh, one more thing, we need to be in the garden around 7:00.” Well, of course I was going to help her! It was the least I could do being that she shares garden goodies with me most every day.
I crawled out of bed, gulping down a quick cup of coffee and off to the garden we went. No rain was in sight and her little car was filled with great joy. I could tell she couldn’t wait for me to experience the garden. I was shocked at the beauty. It was full, green and lush, containing much promise of what was yet to come.
I giggled at the tiny watermelon and cantaloupe and I could only imagine how many tomatoes would come from those tall plants. It was as if we could see the vines climbing and growing as we walked the rows.
As we knelt to search for green beans, I knew that I was on holy ground.
I brushed my hand over the large leaves feeling like I was touching heaven. The corn leaves brushed my hair and I looked to see if angel wings had touched me. The garden became a sanctuary. I couldn’t help but sing that old hymn:
“I come to the garden alone
While the dew is still on the roses
And the voice I hear, falling on my ear
The Son of God discloses
And He walks with me
And He talks with me
And He tells me I am His own
And the joy we share as we tarry there
None other has ever known.”
(In The Garden-Anne Murray)
I had done nothing to deserve this privilege and pleasure. My friends had tilled the soil, laid the rows, spread the plastic, purchased and planted the seed, added the fertilizer, watered, weeded, watched, etc. They had done all the work at their expense, but I was graciously invited to gather the harvest. The harvest was far more than the wonderful bucket of beans.
I carefully snapped, washed and prepared the beans. Some would be cooked for dinner and but most would be frozen for later use. I noticed that I treated them as treasures because they were. It was not the same as going to the grocery and grabbing two handfuls of old beans. I just never knew picking beans was going to be such a spiritual experience.
Jesus has invited us to come into God’s garden and enjoy.
“Come away with Me.” He did all the work and paid the enormous price. There is much fruit to be gathered but we have to answer the invitation and join Him. It is within this intimate friendship that we are privileged to arise and enter in. He gently woos us to come away into the secret place. I can complain that it is too early, too rainy, and too difficult or I can choose to meet Him there and have a holy encounter. Buckets and buckets of goodness, faithfulness, and truth await me.
We kneel in His presence and treasure every truth, every revelation that He gives. This harvesting is to be treasured and stored up in our heart. I have found that this fruit totally transforms a life. It nourishes the heart just as the green beans do the body, changing my thoughts, attitudes, and beliefs. I am recognizing the lies that I have lived so much of my life with and I am uprooting and tossing them out of the garden of my heart. I have chosen to build my life on God’s truth and a great harvest is growing...buckets and buckets of hope ready to be given away.
“I have chosen the way of truth; I have set my heart on your laws.”
The meeting in the garden will change your life. Arise my love and meet me there. Together we will gather buckets of goodness provided by the Savior. We will be changed and we will walk away with buckets to feed and nourish a starving world.