Parents must tend to their gardens

Published 10:06 pm Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Raising children is like tending a garden. Gardens are places of life where flowers, plants, and vegetables develop. Every garden needs a gardener; someone to till the soil, plant and water the seeds, nurture the plants, as well as groom and prune the plants. A garden cannot be left unattended. Even the Garden of Eden needed a gardener. God did not create the garden and leave it to fend for itself. A gardener was necessary to tend and nurture the beautiful garden.

Our children, the most precious flowers that we have, have not been left to fend for themselves. We must always remind ourselves that whoever tends the garden determines the type of fruit that is planted.

The gardener cannot blame the plant for bearing the wrong fruit. The plant does not determine when or where it is planted. The plant cannot ensure that it be provided sufficient water and adequate sunshine.

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Plants only respond to their environments. You see, this is an irrefutable law of gardening. The bible puts it this way, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” The fruit is only a reflection of what was planted. Personally I do not believe that the fruit determines the plant, instead it is the root of the plant that determines the fruit.

Good roots produce good fruit!

So as gardeners, along with watering the seed, there are some vital things that we must do.

One thing that we must do is protect our gardens with fences to keep the animals out. A gopher can destroy your entire garden if you do not guard against it. We must also stay awake and keep watch of our garden. The story is told of a gardener that fell asleep on the job and while he slept another gardener came and sowed tares in the garden. If tares are in our garden we must pull them up to keep them from choking what we have planted. Finally, if we love the plants in our garden we will prune them. The pruning is not meant to harm the plant but rather to make it better in order that it might produce more fruit.

There is a story of a little girl who was walking in a garden. While walking she noticed a particularly beautiful flower. She admired its beauty and enjoyed its fragrance. “It’s so pretty!” she exclaimed. As she gazed upon the flower, her eyes followed the stem down to the soil in which it grew. “This flower is too pretty to be planted in such dirt!” she cried. So she pulled it up by the roots and ran to the water faucet to wash the soil away. It didn’t take long before the flower wilted and died.

When the gardener saw what the little girl had done, he exclaimed, “You have destroyed my finest plant!” “I’m sorry, but I didn’t like it in all of that dirt,” she said. The gardener replied,

“I chose that spot and mixed the soil because I knew that only there could it grow into a beautiful flower.”

Often we murmur because of the circumstances into which we have planted our garden. But we fail to realize that the dirt is necessary for the growth process.

We cannot shield our children from harsh conditions, but we can make sure that harsh conditions do not hinder their productivity.

So, remember that as gardeners our main purpose is to till the soil so that our plant—our children—grows.