Sometimes I think that God must love gardens too. The first place he built for man, the perfect place, was a garden--and Jehovah planted a garden, eastward, in Eden, and there he put the man whom he had formed, Gen 2:8. And it was in that garden that He walked with man every evening. I wonder what they talked about. Probably a lot of the things we talk about—but then maybe not.
What will be ripe tomorrow? Yes, they might have discussed that, because Eden probably produced a bumper crop. Do we need to spray for bugs? No, not that, for bugs were not a problem. What will be ready for supper tomorrow night? Yes, the choice was probably endless. Do we need to pull the plants that are infected with blight so they won’t infect others? No, definitely not that question--at least not at the beginning. Eventually, though, Adam was discussing with Eve exactly what we discuss about our far from perfect garden. Yes, we need to spray. Yes, we need to water. Yes, we need to pull those weeds out before they choke out the plants, and I sure hope there’s enough produce to put up for next year too!
We each have a garden. The Song of Solomon uses the term to refer to the physical body and chastity. I have no trouble using it to refer to my soul as well. Shouldn’t I be out there every evening with God, surveying that garden, examining it for pests and disease, looking for wilt and fungus, making decisions about how to save that garden and make it bear the most fruit for the Lord?
Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?--unless indeed you fail to meet the test! 2 Corinthians 13:5
Prove me, O LORD, and try me; test my heart and my mind. Psalms 26:2
Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting! Psalms 139:23-24
We even sing that last one. Do we mean it? Do we really want to look closely enough to see how to properly tend our gardens, gardens that belong to God? Are we really willing to look through His word long enough and deeply enough to find our faults and fix them?
Every evening God expects you to meet Him in that garden of a soul, to plant His word in it and tend it as necessary, even if it becomes painful. He knows it is the only way for that garden to produce, so that you can someday be in the new Garden of Eden with Him.
The righteous flourish like the palm tree and grow like a cedar in Lebanon. They are planted in the house of the LORD; they flourish in the courts of our God. They still bear fruit in old age; they are ever full of sap and green, to declare that the LORD is upright; he is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in him. Psalms 92:12-15