Summer and winter, and springtime and harvestWilliam M. Runyan / Thomas O Chisholm / Eric Allyn Schrotenboer
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love
Great is Thy faithfulness, great is Thy faithfulness
Morning by morning new mercies I see
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me
After another spectacular day in a series of spectacular days in yet another week soaked in sunshine and featuring daytime temperatures in the 60’s and 70’s, I can confidently say that May 2021 has been a gift.
What could we reasonably do, then, but spend a few more hours in the garden? Digging, planting new shrubs, drinking tea and resting in the refreshing deliciousness of it all.
Max Retriever is a huge fan of the outdoors. If there is a rabbit or a squirrel to chase then he is more than willing. But his favorite activity is to sit, nose high in the air, discerning whatever interesting smell is catching his attention.
I have no photographs of colorful flowers today. But very soon the borders of our garden will be literally saturated with blooms. It’s the pause between the end of the dogwood, azalea, and iris, and the beginning of the hydrangea.
Meanwhile, Rebekah is weeding, transplanting, watering, and praying.
This garden is very much a metaphor for ministry. Lots of time on our knees; huge amounts of work behind the scenes; visioning and preparation; fertilizing, watering, weeding, pruning; commitment and belief and trust; imagination and faithful love; then times of joyful celebration, when all the color and the fruit and the goodness are on display. Even then, like the patchy, weedy “grass” in this photograph, there is always something…
We have seen such a lot of color and fruit and goodness over the years. Right now, coming out of the deep challenge of COVID, I am looking forward to a few weeks featuring stunning displays of encouragement and joy, color and harvest, before we begin to find out what God has next.
[We] planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor.1 Corinthians 3:6-8
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.