It was only last year when he threatened to chop it down. Looking at me across the washing line, as I hung work and school uniforms out to dry “It’s producing no fruit!” It was a matter of fact.
I am the plant rescue-er in our relationship. We even have a designated part of the garden called the plant hospital. A location that we walk past every morning as we enter our days, reminding us to water the plants that are most susceptible in our arid soil.
I looked through the wet clothes hanging on the line, with eyes that begged him not to rip out the tree. And a little smile awaiting my response ” Just one more year love.”
“It’s one of those non-fruiting trees I’m sure of it,” he said with frustration. And I just sighed at the sheer tenacity of trying to grow anything in a garden with a family and big life.
Lately, I have been a little obsessed with seeds. I seem to see them everywhere. On the floor when I walk the path to the beach, in the shops up on the shelf and over the fence on the floor of my friend’s house. They are small, but the capacity for them to grow into shady trees, keep drawing me back to the beauty of slow.
We couldn’t afford an overseas honeymoon when we got married. In hindsight, we didn’t need one, just a room with a big bed and a beautiful vista. We laugh often about the fact that our car door broke, the week of our honeymoon and we had to climb across the gear stick each time we got in and out of the car. Some days lately we have forgotten what it was like to just have one car with a broken door.
I think God has a brilliant sense of humour and imperfection often makes for the best of stories. We ended up down south from where we live, visiting wineries with that wonky door. No fancy cars or taxi’s for our arrival, just two people climbing out the passenger door.
At one of those wineries, we found a half wooden barrel and we decided to buy it to plant a tree as a memento of our honeymoon. We got home and decided on a lime tree (my man quite likes a drop of Mexican brew).
Eight years ago we planted that lime tree in that wooden barrel, it has survived two children, two houses and many bbq’s alongside. It even survived the wooden barrel that fell apart last spring and we planted that non- fruiting lime tree in the ground, hoping it would at last produce.
Then last week eight and a half years after we planted that tree I saw hiding in the flourish of green leaves, five or six or maybe ten little limes on our tree. I couldn’t wait for my husband to come home and I walked him around to see.
He looked at me and smiled with his eyebrows lifting and said quietly “Lucky I didn’t rip it out last spring hey?” And I didn’t say anything, just marvelled at the beauty of the very simple things.
I think we have lost the art of patience, in a society so intent on producing. Since the beginning of July, I have had some time off social media and it has been the best thing I have done all year. It is hard not to be drawn back to it, but the resting of the ground in my heart has needed some time to realign. L
“But the seed in the good soil, these are the ones who have heard the word in an honest and good heart, and hold it fast, and bear fruit with perseverance.”Luke 8: 15
I often spend a lot of time thinking about the future. Thinking about my children, my house, the contribution of my life. It is something that I have always enjoyed spending my procrastinating, in-between moments doing.
It is in these times though that I forget that the seeds I am planting today, will bear my fruit in my tomorrow. Holding fast to what is good, changing my mindsets to ones of servanthood and humility. Finding ways to surrender in the ever present tide of self obsession.
What seeds are you sowing for harvest in your future?
These very simple principles found in the earth of our gardens, go against the success mantras of our day.
I have been reminding myself lately, to reset, to read simple wisdom and to begin again. Creating great soil for the new growth awaiting and surrendering to the beauty of a simple life.
“The engineers of the future will be the poets”Terrance McKenna
I do wonder what is the condition of our poets soil?