This week landscapers planted bushes around the cottage rectory. The greenery adds to the beauty of this wonderful, historic house. Dead bushes by the River St. parking lot were also replaced, and all the plants were fertilized and mulched. It is a hopeful process to plant things, particularly mid-summer.
“You’ll need to water everything twice a day, all summer, and even into September if it stays this warm,” the gardener from New England Nurseries told me. “What?” I thought at first, “how am I going to do that? It’s muddy, I’m busy….” But this morning I realized that this simple watering chore is a gift, a blessing, really. It is an opportunity for silent prayer (Morning and Evening!); a chance to meditate on water. Water that sustains life; water that will make it possible for these new plants to grow and hopefully thrive in their new location. Now I am eager to offer this “living water” twice a day! To watch these plants grow, to ask God to help me grow in faith and regular prayer, and cultivate a deeper sense of wonder in all God provides: sun, earth, water, wind, plants, beauty, longing for wholeness……
While moving the hose around the yard this morning in my muddy shoes, I wondered about whether this experience might be a metaphor, an invitation for each one of us:
What gardens are we watering in our lives now? children, grandchildren, friendships, new jobs, new ministries and passions for service?
How could we use a regular chore or activity as an opportunity to be silent and pray?
Where is God providing “living water” in your life?
Where do you see signs of new growth in yourself, in our community, in the world?
Are there places in your soul that need tending, pruning, feeding or watering in order to live, in order to thrive?
Regular prayer in community is offered on Wednesdays at noon, on Sundays at 8 am. And 10 a.m. Living water comes to us from the deep well of our baptism, Jesus’ promise to us that living water is always present with Him. Have you been drinking deeply from this well of His love?
I plan to enjoy this season of watering and prayer twice a day. Others will help, and things will grow and potentially thrive by the cottage, but more importantly in our hearts, in our lives, in this wonderful community of faith called by God!