God really blessed my vegetable garden this summer. If you’ve followed my blog you’ve seen some of the pictures of zucchini, peppers, beans, etc. etc. I truly enjoyed the growing and eating!
But, the cucumbers had a problem. They were slow to sprout (some had to be replanted) and never made it as you can see from this picture. That was a surprise because last summer I couldn’t keep up with them. If I skipped even a few days of picking, they outgrew their good and became too large and tough with giant seeds.
Last year we had more than needed, so I was able to pass the extras around (and that’s one of the best blessings of a bountiful garden). But not this year. The vines looked like they had a disease or other malady but I don’t know what it was. I may try to do a little investigation before next year.
However, I am optimistic about next year. Even as the vines were sitting there fading away this year, I bought a neat frame with netting that the cucumbers can climb up and around. I won’t hesitate to try again with the hopes of numerous burpless cucumbers for eating and giving away.
Being a gardener (or a farmer, or many other undertakings) requires hope. We look forward to next week or next season, or next year with hope. That also follows our walk with Christ. But the “hopes” have different meanings.
I will hope for a good cucumber crop next year – and it may or may not happen.
I will put my hope in Christ in all things – and that hope is assured because of Who He is and what He has done for me. “My hope is built on nothing less, than Jesus’ blood and righteousness!” That’s a hope that will not fail.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,” 1 Peter 1:3 ESV
Moon Flower with Bugs
I found this one hiding in the bushes out behind the garden. I didn’t think we would have any this year but there it was! (and actually another one is now blooming on the fence.)
I don’t know what kind of bugs are on the flower, but it doesn’t really matter. It’s still spectacular. And wonderful is appropriate too. It’s one of the wonderful things our Lord has done.
“I will give thanks to the LORD with my whole heart; I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.” Psalms 9:1 ESV
Blackeyed Susan Vine
A few years ago I planted Blackeyed Susan Vine seeds along one section of the back fence. They grew and flowered wonderfully that year and the following year self seeded and blanketed the fence section in yellow again. I didn’t plant any more seeds so the annual show declined.
This year I had not seen any, until last weekend when I saw a peek of yellow in one of the hydrangeas. A vine had come up in the bush and had made it to flowering. One of those unexpected blessings from God – even though I had done no work to help the plant along. Sound familiar?
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9 ESV
It’s hard to tell from the picture just how big the dahlia flower is, but it’s almost a foot across. This is the first year we’ve tried dahlias and they have been a great success. Sharon made it official today and told me to put them on the list to plant next year.
I took the picture last week. Since then, the flower has faded and been clipped off. But it was a beautiful blessing while it lasted! Several places in Scripture describe our lives like flowers or grass that come and fade away. But, during that time we are given countless blessings by our Heavenly Father. And, we should have an eternal view – thinking of being with our merciful and gracious God forever.
“He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us. As a father shows compassion to his children, so the LORD shows compassion to those who fear him. For he knows our frame; he remembers that we are dust. As for man, his days are like grass; he flourishes like a flower of the field; for the wind passes over it, and it is gone, and its place knows it no more. But the steadfast love of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear him, and his righteousness to children’s children, to those who keep his covenant and remember to do his commandments. The LORD has established his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom rules over all. Bless the LORD, O you his angels, you mighty ones who do his word, obeying the voice of his word!” Psalms 103:10-20 ESV
If you would like more blessings, read all of Psalm 103, and consider all that God has done for us.