Settle Yourself: Release
If you are able, go outside to a place where there are plants and other greenery. Take a few deep breaths. Begin to notice the life around you.
If my garden could talk, what wisdom for my soul might it provide?
Eat more chicken?
Don’t tread on me?
On the more serious side, maybe your garden might say:
- Give me boundaries. The weeds are intruding and the dogs are stomping my seedlings.
- Don’t crowd me. I need space to spread my roots.
- Hide that hose. God can provide our moisture. Depend on Him.
- It’s OK to randomly sow my seeds. Everything doesn’t need to be in orderly straight lines.
- No pesticides please. No need to poison others with what was meant to be good.
- I need time with you. Without your regular tending and attention, I wither and die.
- Prune me. This encourages new growth.
- Keep my soil healthy so I can flourish. Over time my needs may change. Adjusting the PH level of my soil today doesn’t mean it won’t change in the future.
- Don’t hinder my light. Nothing good grows in darkness.
- Remember that for everything there is a season: a time to plant, a time to grow, and a time to reap the harvest.
Oh Lord Jesus
work in us what you want of us,
For you are indeed the true gardener
at once, maker and tiller
and keeper of your garden
you who plant with the word,
water with the spirit
and give your increase
with your power.
— Cisterician Guerric of Igny (12th century)
Kathy Milans is the lead member of the Soul Care Collective Steering Committee.