So, sometimes I get ideas into my head that seem like a good idea at the time. It seems simple enough. In theory. And then it slowly starts to creep into my head how much work is actually going to be required for the “simple” task at hand.
Exhibit A: having my own garden. (I wrote a little about this in the last blog.)
Last year, when I got this little idea into my head, it was too far along in the season to begin planting etc. So I merely did some weeding and planned out where I wanted everything to go. I was so excited. This year I was finally able to begin the process of making my country girl dreams come true.
When I say I underestimated the work (and money) involved…I mean. Gardening is a whole other level of a hobby. The bags of soil and fertilizer to fill up all the garden beds. The seeds. The tools. It was more than I initially bargained for. But I was super excited so it was the sacrifice I was willing to make.
I got all my seeds planted where I had mapped out. I looked up how many to plant, how deep to plant them, how much to water etc, for each veggie. I was proud of myself. I went to the local store to buy plants and seeds. There was a sales lady there working in the garden centre that I ended up talking to…on more than one visit. I had so many questions and she very graciously and joyfully answered them all. I think she could tell I was feeling very anxious about me doing it all wrong and nothing actually growing. She looked at me and said, “Just relax. All a plant knows how to do is grow. That’s all it knows how to do.” I remember thinking how deep that was…especially for a visit to Canadian Tire. It stayed with me.
That same day that I planted all of my seeds, it rained. Like, torrentially. Of course it did. I thought so much rain would wash all of my freshly planted seeds away and/or drown them. It wasn’t too soon after…as in, a couple of weeks…that the dog somehow figured out how to get into a part of the garden that apparently wasn’t as secure as I had thought. I came back from work with my spinach and kale bed stomped on. My perfect rows were scattered. I remember feeling so discouraged. I tried to straighten them as much as I could but as for the seeds I had planted, there was nothing I could do. They were already in the ground…wherever they happened to be now. (NOT in my perfect rows anymore.)
Every day I went out to check on my garden. I looked for any sign of life. Day after day. Week after week. Not just for my spinach and kale. For all of it. Still nothing. I thought maybe I had done it wrong. Maybe I watered too much? Too little? It was my first time doing this after all.
Then one day when I went to check, I stopped. And I squinted. A little something was starting to catch my eye. A little sprout here..a little sprout there. Here a sprout, there a sprout (Everywhere a sprout sprout!)
I almost got down on all fours so I could really be sure. And sure enough, there they were. First a few and then they all started coming up. And in perfectly imperfect rows. The torrential rain and the dog had stomped on all of the seeds. But here they were. Sprouting and blooming where they ended up. The plant lady at Canadian Tire was right. They did what they knew to do. They grew. Despite being trampled. Despite my naivety, self doubt and amateur skills. The plants knew what to do. It was already ingrained in them when they were created. It was their nature to grow. (Side note; in full transparency, while most of my plants grew in nicely, (still waiting on a couple...also, didn't have any luck with potatoes..yet!) we seemed to have had a little visitor that also enjoyed my spinach as much as I did. “Thumper” has helped himself every chance he’s had. I’d like to think he has a family to feed as well but that doesn’t mean I’m not offended that he has ruined my beautiful spinach! *le sigh* It was good whilst it lasted. I’ll just have to reinforce the parameters. He’s so lucky he’s cute…'cause he almost ended up as a side dish.)
Back to the story…
Just as my veggies just know how to grow because it’s ingrained in them, it’s the same thing with you and me. God has placed inside each one of us some sort of skill, talent and gift that is unique to you and I. That no one else has or is able to do it quite like you can. It’s already in there. Here’s the catch though: It’s up to you and I to actually put the work in and cultivate it.
For example. I had the dream of writing songs, singing those songs and then eventually recording them, putting out my own music and singing them in front of people. I could’ve thought about it all day long. For years. (Which I did.) But the fact that I have an album out of my own songs didn’t just happen. It didn’t stop with just me thinking about it. Eventually I had to get to work. And get over some fear, nerves and insecurity. A lot of it. It was a major investment, on all counts. But now that it’s a reality, it was definitely worth it. And I knew it would be, which is what kept me going.
When I was writing the songs and making the album, I wasn’t trying to sound like other people. I have my influences of course, but I knew I had something to say, the way only I can say it. It was already there, ingrained in me from birth that this was going to happen. It was my job to cultivate it, work hard, hone the necessary skills (lay the tile, as they say).
There is also something inside of you that needs cultivating. That needs to be worked and brought to life. It’s already inside of you, waiting for a little water and sunshine, mixed with a whole lot of sweat and hard work.
But you’d be surprised what you’re capable of growing if you keep at it and give it some time. You could end up with your own garden…or an album…or a new career…a beautiful relationship…or a new perspective on life and love. Whatever it may be, it’s already on the inside of you, put there by God Himself. You do what you know to do (lay the tile, do the work), and then let it do what it already knows how to do…grow.