Mint Plant in a pot – The Plant Shop-Plant nursery in Chennai with ...

My wife and I started gardening a few weeks ago. We are growing mint, tomatoes, basil, and hot peppers. After buying the plants from the nursery, we moved them to bigger pots, changed the soil, and gave them special plant fertilizer. We water the pots about 3-4 times weekly. We place them in direct sunlight. We move them out of the wind. We even watch and spray for harmful bugs. Best part – I’ve gotten absolutely no fruit from the plant.

The process has been laborious. Why would I sign up for this?

This question has been on my mind – but there is something about growing plants for food that speaks to my heart. Perhaps it’s that my grandfather had a farm and I have blurry memories of milking cows and eating there? Or perhaps it stems (pun!) from earlier in my genealogy?

Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
And God said, “See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food. Also, to every beast of the earth, to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, in which there is life, I have given every green herb for food”; Genesis 1:28-30

See, I was ordained to eat from the earth, I was appointed to have dominion over it. I was given an implied responsibility here, and then it’s explained in the next chapter.

The Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there He put the man whom He had formed. And out of the ground the Lord God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food….Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it. Genesis 2:8-9, 15

There it is. I love that God’s Word has answers to all of my deepest questions. My yearning was planted (that’s 2 puns) in my heart.

In Psalm 24, David says “the earth and its fullness are the Lord’s” – yes, it’s all His! But I was given a role to garden. Adam was the first gardener, his job was to keep weeds out, and to make sure the fruit comes.

Psalm 24 is significant for another reason in our Coptic Orthodox tradition – we chant it during the resurrection reenactment.

Who is this King of glory?
The Lord of hosts,
He is the King of glory.
Psalm 24:10
We know Adam did not do the best job. The weeds of sin crept in, the Water of grace was blocked off, and the human race starved without the Bread of life. The fruitless tree was due to be cut down, but out of mercy, the Trinity granted us another chance.
My mint plant was essentially dead. I hadn’t watered it and it had no green, and the plant was dry and brittle. Instead of tossing it, I remembered my efforts, my time, my love, my DESIRE FOR IT TO GROW, and started a new relationship with my mint. By MY work, the mint was revived.
When Mary Magdalene went to the tomb to seek the Lord, she thought “they” took His body. She was stuck around the tomb, focused on His death.
Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?”
She, supposing Him to be the gardener, said to Him, “Sir, if You have carried Him away, tell me where You have laid Him, and I will take Him away.” John 20:15
Mary could not comprehend that He was “the KING of glory”, “the resurrection and the life”, so she thought He was the gardener.
Could John the Beloved be on to something by mentioning this detail? My friends, Mary was right – only if we see Jesus as the gardener of our souls. He came and died for our eternal life. He looked and saw dryness all over the earth. He saw a brittle, dry, fruitless world. Instead of cutting it down, He took flesh and died on the wood of the Cross. He knew the unfailing love He had for the world.
Allow Him to prune. Let him fertilize, water, and “give the growth” where things may have seemed lifeless. Today, if you cannot recognize Jesus as the King, ask Him to show you that He is the true Gardener, the Second Adam, the Solution, the perfect God-Man.
Jesus reveals Himself to us once again. My mint came back with some water. Christ will give you a water that will cause you to “never thirst again”.
#1thingisneeded. Start gardening with the Gardener.

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