This weekend my husband and I went to Agway to pick out our seeds for our vegetable garden. And I have to say, I have never been a tomboy kind of girl, I like my Anthropologie perfume and my dangling earrings, and someone might ask me if I’m lost if I wandered around too long in a place that specializes in mulch and mowers. But I LOVE Agway. Because I love the idea of cultivating something small and good and bringing it to life.
I am a gardening novice. Last year was our first try. We planted the heirloom tomato seeds my sister gave me too late, and the frost came too soon for them to flourish. But our Italian green beans were the best I’ve ever had–with a little lemon juice, butter, and fresh-cracked pepper. And I can remember the grand entrance of green spouts in my kitchen window herbs last spring, and how it was like an adrenaline kick to the wintered-over heart.
So when you place a sunlight-starved girl in front of rows and rows of colorful seed packets all for $2 and under, how can she resist?
But I think, at its root, this is more than spring fever. And I don’t think its a stretch to say that its in human nature to want to cultivate, a legacy that traces back to Eden, the garden God lovingly created for His people in which to dwell, and which He charged them to care for. I love Wendell Berry’s connection between our food and theology that he writes in The Gift of Good Land,
I believe there is a sacramental grace in the simple, sustainable, and made-from-scratch. There is frustration too. I don’t always look at my sink full of crusty dishes as a sacrament. I am disheartened to invest such care in seeds only to find them stillborn under the soil. And I am pretty sure I am cursed for life when it comes to homemade pizza dough. But in between, there are pockets of incredible grace. When I plant a seed, host a meal, share some bread, I feel that I am engaging in the work of creating and cultivating, and to me, this feels like a blessing. There’s still something in me that is thrilled to bring good things to life.
Where do you encounter sacramental grace in the everyday? How do you bring good things to life in small and daily ways?
P.S. I’m tinkering with my blog look…what do you think? I’m open to suggestions!