The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, a spring whose waters never fail. —Isaiah 58:11
Growing up in what was proclaimed by the locals to be the “Nursery Capitol of the World” provided opportunities to develop a love of nature and to refine personal gardening skills. The title might bit of an exaggeration, nevertheless, the warm basin of rich, dark, loamy soil resting in the protection of the surrounding rolling hills in Warren County, Tennessee appears to be a spot chosen for plant life to flourish and grow.
However, it wasn’t until my adulthood that God began to speak to me in the garden with simple lessons of planting, watering, growing. There were also times of struggle when I learned what it meant to be pruned. Now, after many seasons of listening, learning and trusting, I can reflect and see His hand written on every leaf, petal, and plant in the gardens that I have cared for and called my own.
In those fragrant and colorful places, there were messages of faith that pointed me to Jesus, “beautiful Savior, Son of God and Son of man - the ruler of all nature.” He is able satisfy my need and to strengthen me. He is worthy to be praised. His sacrifice is overwhelming.
Holy Father, show me your majesty in creation, guide me, strengthen me, point me to Jesus and allow me to drink the water - until I can become the spring. Amen
FAIREST LORD JESUS
Fairest Lord Jesus, ruler of all nature,
O thou of God and man the Son,
Thee will I cherish, Thee will I honor,
thou, my soul's glory, joy, and crown.
Fair are the meadows, fairer still the woodlands,
robed in the blooming garb of spring:
Jesus is fairer, Jesus is purer
who makes the woeful heart to sing.
Fair is the sunshine, fairer still the moonlight,
and all the twinkling starry host:
Jesus shines brighter, Jesus shines purer
than all the angels heaven can boast.
Beautiful Savior! Lord of all the nations!
Son of God and Son of Man!
Glory and honor, praise, adoration,
now and forevermore be thine.
--Anonymous 17th century German hymn