Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of July 11, 2010
As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press,
here is a selection from our book of daily devotions,
"Living as the Beloved: One Day at a Time," by the
Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
meditation. We hope you will be blessed.
Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.
Hear and understand
"But as for what was sown on good soil, this is the
one who hears the word and understands it, who indeed
bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in
another sixty, and in another thirty."
For twenty years I have lived mostly in apartment
buildings. I have had little opportunity to dig in
the dirt and grow anything other than flowers and
cacti on the balcony until the year when I moved
into a house with a yard. I was surprised at the
amount of effort required in basic yard work. During
summer months, the lawn needs watering, mowing, and
weeding on a weekly basis. The soil in our yard is
not good and requires fertilizer and other additives
throughout the year. Previous renters had constantly
struggled with the lawn and flower garden.
The lawn and garden are teaching me about the "good
soil" to which this parable refers. Even with the
best heart soil, our hearts still need regular care
and attention just like the soil of our fields, lawns,
and gardens. We need to become spiritual gardeners.
Everyone has spiritual weeds to be pulled. We all
need pruning to promote new, healthy, and abundant
growth in God. If we neglect the garden in our
hearts, our life with God will suffer. Now some
growth takes time, labor, commitment, and patience
if we want to bear good fruit. There are no short
cuts in the garden.
Certainly my inexperience is obvious to neighbors.
Both yard and garden constantly improve as I learn
the rhythms of growth and bloom, fertilization and
care. Various stores in town offer free gardening
classes, and many books and Internet resources offer
practical wisdom. Best of all, when I ask for help
neighbors are more than happy to loan tools and share
advice based on years of experience. One neighbor in
particular has a green thumb. His love for the earth
and growing things is beautiful. He always has a
moment to walk over, look at a plant, and make a
helpful suggestion to improve the garden. I call
him Saint Harold.
The bottom line is this: if we wish to have a fruitful
and bountiful spiritual harvest in our lives, we need
to cultivate the soil of our hearts with prayer, sacred
words, spiritual readings, and affirming community, and
to be in step with the rhythms of life. Very few people
do all these things well by themselves. Most of us need
mentoring in the spiritual life by the more seasoned,
experienced gardeners of the spirit. This is an
important aspect of Christian discipleship. Disciples
mentor young babes in the faith and help each other
grow up in Christian maturity and service and yes,
In my home, we have a tile that has the saying, "Plant
a garden and magic will grow." Yes, magic will grow!
But magic grows best with loving, thoughtful, committed,
God, bless our hearing and understanding with this
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
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