Whew! I finally finished phase one of my raised bed vegetable garden project with the addition of the side fencing and access gates. This plan actually began last summer when I purchased a 2’ X 8” raised bed kit through Home Depot, but with all the company we had last summer and everything else we had going during the first summer in our new residence, the kit never made it out of the box! So, by the time spring came around this year, I was eager to get started!
Everything seemed to be progressing well as I got the kit assembled, purchased some hardware netting for the underside in order to keep the burrowing critters out and then got it attached. But that’s when the affairs of our daily life began to pull me away from the project. Piper’s needs, rainy weather, a lack of energy and a whole bunch of unexpected interruptions continued to take me away from my gardening plans!
Through it all I never gave up… well, almost never as I seriously considered waiting until next year a few weeks ago! One of the big things that the Lord has been trying to get through to me in the context of the unique circumstances and lifestyle that we are living with Piper’s daily health needs and concerns, is to be content working on all the various dreams and visions that I have for our home and property, a little bit at a time! So… slowly… and sometimes not too happily, I am learning to be satisfied with any steps that I am able to complete each day… no matter if they are baby steps or giant leaps!
Since my wife is my main focus right now, I have to plan accordingly when working on home projects and make sure that I have the energy, strength and peace of mind and spirit left over to be able to assist her with any need she has… 24/7. Now that may sound simple to some of you, but I have always driven myself to complete tasks on my preplanned schedules. I just do not like seeing unfinished projects around the home! Thinking about it now… that is most likely why I tended to come in the house at the end of a day off with cuts and scrapes on my arms and legs. You know… when that happens today… I can see hear my lovely and caring wife saying (in a frustrated tone…) “Jim, you’ve got to stop hurting yourself!”
So… what started as a spring project finally ended yesterday when I planted the one and only scrawny looking zucchini plant that I could find after searching multiple stores (I mean, who plants veggies in August!) To me though, this was a great victory! I had told Piper that I didn’t care if it was the end of summer or not, but that I was going to plant something when I finally finished this project! And although it may not be much, at least I have a couple of tomatoes and the zucchini in the ground! Besides, the weather actually stays pretty warm out here through October… so… there might still be a chance that we get some fruits from our labors!
I was reading this morning from 2 Samuel 22:25 in the Message paraphrase Bible where it states that “God rewrote the text of my life when I opened the book of my heart to his eyes.” That statement got me to thinking about how I had to continually rewrite the original plan I had for my raised bed project. As the circumstances of life got in the way, I needed to regularly make adjustments to the plan that I was adamant about finishing THIS summer! And in reality, many of those “adjustments” made the project work easier and more efficiently than my original ideas!
I think I could say without reserve, that this is exactly what is happening in my wife’s and my life as we continually allow the Lord to make “adjustments” in the book of our lives! When I read that verse this morning, I immediately had a footnote to add to it saying: “and then gave Him the red pen to edit the text wherever He wants and to write the ensuing chapters!”
With everything going on in my life right now, I have to continually fight off discouragement. I no longer have the freedom with my time to do whatever I want… whenever I want to do it! I may plan to mow the lawn one day, only to have that plan be pushed out due to Piper’s changing needs. So, do I get upset? Well… I get tempted… but eventually remember that the daily text of our lives is being written by Him and not me! If I truly have given Him control of the pen, then I must yield my desires to Him… would you agree? I guess you could sort of say that He is the author while I am the actor in the play of our lives! And sure, I can improvise along the way, but I have found out that this is not always the best plan! His lines are far better than mine!
To say that life is different for us right now would be a great understatement… so I am glad that He is the one writing this chapter and not me! It gives me great comfort and peace in knowing that even though things are totally upside down from where I thought that they would be in this time of our lives, that He still has the final chapters clearly in mind… and just like a great action novel, the gripping excitement keeps me going on and flipping the pages until the final conclusion!’
Have a great rest of the week and as you do, keep asking yourself… “Who am I expecting to write the text of my life today?”