God’s Beloved Greenery

God’s are the earth and its fullness;
God cares for the world and those who dwell in it.

Psalm 24:1

This is Arbor Day, a very special day for my husband who sports a truly capable green thumb. He takes an immediate liking to all plants great and small. If there is such a person as a “plant whisperer”, Mike is indeed that person. This is evidenced in his decades-long relationships with two plants. The first is a colorful, purplish-green Tradescantia Zebrina. 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 1987 when he was named a “candidate” for the diaconate. This designation indicated that he would indeed be ordained the following year. Mike’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. So it is that both plants are very precious to him.

These plants have survived outdoor transitions from spring through summer to fall when frost came unexpectedly early on more than one occasion. They have also survived floods and dry spells when we were away and our designated plant-caregivers 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.

My husband’s adventures with plants are a living parable regarding God’s ongoing and loving care of each one of us. 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.

©2019 Mary Penich – All Rights Reserved

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OOPS! Earth Day… Almost!

God looked at everything God made and found it to be very good…
From Genesis 1:31

Though I usually post one daily reflection, I’m compelled to add another today to correct myself…

This is the Eve of Earth Day, not Arbor Day. While these observances are equally important reminders to care for the wonders of creation, Earth Day has had special importance for me and my family since its inception in 1970 because it falls on my sister’s birthday. “All the more reason,” I tell myself, “that I shouldn’t have made this error!”

Like my husband who has great affection for everything green, my sister Cecele loved nature and the many creatures who make their homes in its midst. Though Cecele enjoys these things from the hereafter these days, I’m certain that she continues to find great joy in it all, especially in her favorites, deer and birds. Every time I see either, I know that Cecele is nearby smiling with me.

With that, I invite you to join me in celebrating the natural wonders of this amazing world of ours on this Earth Day Eve! I also invite you to continue your revelry through next Friday, April 27, when we celebrate Arbor Day 2018!

Generous God, thank you for the natural beauty which surrounds us in nature and in one another. Help us to nurture and to care deeply for both!

©2018 Mary Penich – All Rights Reserved

Arbor Day… Almost!

Then let the earth bring forth vegetation:
every kind of plant that bears seed and
every kind of fruit tree on earth that bears fruit…

From Genesis 1:11

On this Arbor Day Eve, I celebrate my husband’s decades-long relationships with two plants. The first is a colorful, purplish-green Tradescantia Zebrina. His parents gave it to us as a housewarming gift when we purchased our first home. This plant is older than our sons! The second is a philodendron which Mike’s teachers gave him 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 precious to him.

The amazing part of all of this is that these plants have survived decades of indoor-to-outdoor transitions from spring through summer to fall when frost came unexpectedly early on more than one occasion. They’ve also survived floods and dry spells when we were away and our kindly plant-caretakers were either overly-zealous or a bit too sparing with their watering. After each incident, Mike painstakingly nursed his beloved greenery back to health.

I think I’ll tell Mike that his plant-care adventures would make a great homily regarding God’s ongoing and merciful care of each one of us. Better yet, I’m taking the lead and sharing this lesson with you. Like Mike’s plants, we couldn’t be in better hands!

Gracious God, thank you for caring for us with such love and mercy. Thank you, also, for the generous many souls who imitate your caring ways in all that they do.

©2018 Mary Penich – All Rights Reserved

God’s Greenery

Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good,
for his mercy endures forever.

From Psalm 118:1-2

It is Arbor Day, a very special day for my husband who sports a truly capable green thumb. Mike takes an immediate liking to all plants great and small. Today, I must share Mike’s decades-long relationships with two plants. The first is a colorful, purplish-green Tradescantia Zebrina. 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 1987 when he was named a “candidate” for the diaconate. This designation meant that he would indeed be ordained the following year. Mike’s staff realized it had taken a good deal of effort for their principal to get to that point and they wanted to cheer him on. Needless to say, both plants are precious to him.

Most amazing is that these plants have survived outdoor transitions from spring through summer to fall when frost came unexpectedly early. The plants have also survived floods and dry spells when we were away and our designated plant-caregivers 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.

On this Arbor Day, it occurs to me that Mike’s plant adventures are a living parable regarding God’s ongoing and merciful care of each one of us. 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 such mercy.

©2016 Mary Penich – All Rights Reserved

Arbor Day

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 1987 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.

©2015 Mary Penich – All Rights Reserved

Enduring Love

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