Saturday, July 26, 2014

Abundance (Among the Raspberries and Cucumbers)




I stood on a steep, wooded trail eating raspberries by the handful.  In that moment I was only my outstretched arm, greedy fingers prying plump berries from large clusters.  I was eyes trained on the color red hiding beneath green leaves; I was only a gaping mouth, consuming.  

Eventually my eyes lifted and I realized the berries covered the mountainside – I could never eat them all.  Then I slowed and began to taste again, the abundance, the red juice a communion connecting me again to the grace and mercy that dwells among us.  

This morning I took my kids hiking.  We walked around the edges of soybean fields, through cool shaded woods.  All along the trail berries hung, bright jewels singing their siren songs of sweetness.  Again we were all arms, reaching, grabbing, mouths consuming.  

Isaiah dove into the woods like a hound on the hunt, throwing poison ivy caution to the wind.  Finally, satisfied, he lifted his shirt and rubbed his soft, round belly, “Me full, Mommy.”   

After lunch (fresh berries on yogurt) we ended up in the garden.  We clambered about, hunter gatherers careful to keep our feet from the vines and leaves.  The garden is a sea of green layered on top of green and our eyes played tricks on us – how to tell the green of a cucumber from its vine, the dark emerald of a melon from the leaf that shades it.  Cucumbers hid, giant ones nestled in among the zucchini bushes.  The harvest was too great for five pairs of hands to bear, so we filled the red wagon and pulled it up to the house.  

Wherever Jesus shows up in the Bible, there is abundance – great vats of wine that refuse to run out, bread that rises to the occasion of feeding a crowd, catches of fish that nearly sink the boats.  I am not a fisherman and the bread we took to the lake last night to feed the ducks lasted about as long as I thought it should.  But right now there’s a strainer of blood-red raspberries in my kitchen sink and somehow I know that grace and mercy dwell still in the woods, the garden, in the abundance of the earth giving and giving, as it does.  

5 comments:

  1. Lovely abundance - what a wonderful day for you and your family. Thanks for writing it out.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Diana. It's so nice to see you here.

      Delete
  2. I don't look for berries when I hike at a nature reserve 30 miles west of where we live. Except for the occasional bird and the sounds of a nearby river, the quiet is almost absolute. I call it "the silence of God."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Silence can be abundance too, thanks for the reminder.

      Delete
  3. As God is known to do, He has been bathing me in an abundance of words on abundance. Not the least of which are these you have shared. What a wonder, indeed, that Jesus was ALWAYS surrounded by abundance. Even an abundance of life, itself. He was full of SO MUCH LIFE that death couldn't even hang on. And how I long for that abundant life. Except, of course, that I already have it. As do you. Thanks for sharing it.

    ReplyDelete