Last Sunday one of the kids gave me a hug when she came into the lobby and then headed off toward Sunday School. Suddenly she stopped, turned on a dime and raced back. With her eyes wide and her arms raised up she said, “The pumpkin plants have EXPLODED!!”
When I went out to look I saw what she meant. What had recently been little sprouts had turned into sizable plants. And lots of them: the kids didn’t skimp on seeds when they did the planting.
That made me think about the way the Community Garden has developed this year. When May rolled around the weeds had gone crazy, so we organized two work parties. It only rained on us a little and we had a good time cleaning out the raised beds and paths. People new to the garden team worked with longtime members, getting to know each other in the process.
The experienced gardeners in the group felt great satisfaction at seeing the beds cleared out, ready for planting. Not everyone gets excited about bare soil turned over with compost, but some of us could picture what was coming. Before too long baby tomato plants and vegetable seeds began to develop, though none as dramatically as the pumpkins. If they’ve exploded in just a week, think how they’ll look by the end of summer!
In the vegetable garden we can recognize an image of our own spiritual growth. Seeds sown on bare soil take time to mature, but with God’s help they can produce a great harvest. As the apostle Paul said, “I planted, Apollos watered, but God gives the growth.” (1 Corinthians 3:6)
This also describes the renewal going on in St. Timothy’s staff. The three planning teams have patiently prepared for the call process, surveying the congregation and identifying key elements of the new job descriptions. Now the recruitment ads for our new Music Director and Senior Ministry Program Coordinator are online, and we’re beginning to receive resumes. The Youth Ministry planning team is following close behind, getting closer to posting our Youth Director position.
It’s still too soon to picture the new staff members, but it won’t be long before they’ll be getting started with their ministries. I’m thankful to everyone who has participated in this process (especially the members and leaders of the planning teams!), and I look forward to interviewing candidates for the positions.
We’ve been preparing the soil, planting and watering, so that the harvest can begin. Thanks be to God for the gift of new life and the spiritual energy which sustains it!