Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good,
for his mercy endures forever.
From Psalm 118:1-2
On Arbor Day, I must tell you about my husband’s decades-long relationships with two plants. The first is a colorful, purplish-green Tradescantia Zebrina, more commonly known as a Wandering Jew. His parents gave it to us as a housewarming gift when we purchased our first home. The plant is older than our sons! The second is a philodendron which my husband’s teachers gave to him in 1988 when he was named a “candidate” for the diaconate. This designation meant that he would indeed be ordained the following year. My husband’s staff realized that it had taken a good deal of effort for their principal to get to this point and they wanted to cheer him on. Needless to say, both plants are very precious to him.
The amazing part of all of this is that these plants have survived outdoor transitions from spring through summer to fall when frost came unexpectedly early on more than one occasion. The plants have also survived floods and dry spells when we were away and our designated plant-waterers were either overly-zealous or stingy with their task. After each incident, my husband painstakingly nursed his beloved greenery back to health for another season.
I must tell my husband that his plant adventures would make a great homily regarding God’s ongoing and merciful care of each one of us. Better yet, I am taking the lead and sharing this lesson with you. Like my husband’s plants, we could not be in better hands!
Gracious God, thank you for caring for us and for all of creation with such love and mercy. Thank you, also, for the generous souls you have placed among us who imitate your caring ways in all that they do.
©2014 Mary Penich – All Rights Reserved