Tending Others Gardens, 23OCT – #285 *



Tending Others Gardens, 23OCT

Yeah, late night camping, can’t sleep… enjoying the weekend, been meaning to finish this one, and now I had a reminder… tenting in this chilly night… I am blessed…

“Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit”… This Simon and Garfunkel song sings “oh Lord…. I had tended my own garden much too long…”

The line is after asking why the Lord has forsaken the singer… I have tended my own garden speaks to me as an allusion that the singer has not tended to God’s garden and not felt God’s faithfulness. So this gives me pause to think about what we can give and what we can do for others….to love freely, to give what we can and to carry each other’s burdens… and like Jesus instructs with the Widow’s mite scripture, we are to give all that we can give… I don’t think you are forced to sell everything in this day and age, but sometimes it might be just as simple as a smile, or a kind word here and there.

You can ALWAYS share a smile, no strings attached.

So earlier this week my work sponsored volunteer day was at a local food bank distribution center sorting 11,000 pounds of meat with about 40 people… and the woman behind me (not from my company) had the most sour expression on her face all day long… I don’t know that’s probably just her, I don’t think she was complaining, she just had that expression… And when I would turn from sorting my pork products and talk to her at the beef station she would just answer me very succinctly, no extension of extra friendliness, nor desire to know me…that’s ok, even though I tend to just try to be friendly with everyone, I certainly know not everyone is like that.

Now, the woman in front of me was very friendly so we had a good time dancing to the music keeping our souls warm in meat packing 37 degree temperatures. That’s a nice connection to make, affirmation of smiles and silliness to pass the time in a fun way.

It’s cold tonight, I am tent camping again… Mid forties…. So I am thinking of a homeless guy, Mike, that I see when I drive on a main road… I open my window and say good morning because he is the most friendly guy ever, he does not ask for anything and he ALWAYS has a kind word…. I don’t reach out to him just because I want to feel good, that’s not the point, and I do not intend to boast of good works, I just want to say I appreciate his friendliness…. but sure, i do I feel good when he wishes me well… you’re better believe i smile when he says “you have a great smile” in a sweet way. Yesterday I stopped (yes it was safe and out in the open) and he said “I love your colorful shoes”, hey doesn’t every woman like it when someone praises their shoes, LOL… Mike always has a friendly kind word, gives me advice about eating well, about getting my car ready for winter. I dropped off a bag of clothes that another friend had given me and asked me to give directly to him because he wanted to see it goes directly to the people who needed it and Mile was so appreciative and he said something like “I have a friend for life”…. Now, granted our interactions are very short and he’s probably going to have to move on somewhere else in the deep winter…he’s not sure what he will do… I don’t have resources to help him, and he NEVER asks… i can give him advice but I can’t and don’t over give… Actually many people give him things because he is so friendly…. It’s not so simple to just hop into a shelter… He likes being on his own.

We have not much more than a friendly word exchange, no strings attached. Does it make my day??? you better believe that, it’s an awesome start to my commute to get a smile… I am not super needy for kind words, I am truly BLESSED… But it’s a reminder that kindness begets kindness no strings attached. Mike was first kind to me, he was tending to my section of God’s garden… He blesses me, not just vice versa.

I think it’s also a very good lesson for our children that we drive by and say “look there’s the nicest guy and he has almost nothing, we should be so grateful…”… yes this is an important lesson for our children… Please remember Mike in your prayers this chilly night, as I feel that his smile tends to multiply blessings thru our whole community every day…

Yes, let’s ALL tend to God’s garden, God is faithful, we should smile more to remind people…

Galatians 6:2 NIV “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”

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