Sunday, January 29, 2012

Be still


When I walk in the garden God speaks to my heart in the details saying "Be still."

Reflection:
Psalm 46
God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.
...
The LORD Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.
..
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God"

A contribution to this week's Psalm challenge at Daily Athens Photo

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Fire


I found these Nasturtiums on on the weekend, creeping over from the neighbour's side of the fence.

When I first met Nasturtiums
The Grade 1 class laboriously read in unison:

"This is Dick
Run, Dick, run.
Nip is a dog.
Nip, run to Dick.
See Dora run.
Here is Jane.
I see Jane.
Dora has Jane."

Jane was the doll.  Oh how I wished I had been named Jane instead of Joan.

But of all Dick and Dora's Happy Ventures there is one standout -- a man planted a red Nasturtium in an old boot. The plant grew and grew until it covered the roof of his cottage and the neighbours called the fire brigade because they thought his house was on fire.

Nasturtium, what a gloriously long word for a five year old fed on "Run, Dick, run" and as for the idea of flowers growing all over the roof  -- look at the old detached kitchen that stood in our back yard sandwiched between the dunny and the chook house.  It flowered like this every October.



I guess these photos also explain why I have such a fondness for ramshackle backyard sheds.

I've now added photos to the earlier posts.  Click here to view them.

Reflection:
Luke 12:28 New International Version (NIV)
"If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith!"

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Enthralled by her beauty


I am enthralled by the beauty of my garden clothed in her verdant summer attire.

Reflection:
Psalm 45:10-15 New International Version (NIV)
A wedding song
Listen, daughter, and pay careful attention:
Forget your people and your father’s house.
Let the king be enthralled by your beauty;
honor him, for he is your lord.
The city of Tyre will come with a gift,
people of wealth will seek your favor.
All glorious is the princess within her chamber;
her gown is interwoven with gold.
In embroidered garments she is led to the king;
her virgin companions follow her—
those brought to be with her.
Led in with joy and gladness,
they enter the palace of the king.

A contribution to this week's Psalm challenge at Athens Daily Photo

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Red and White


I don't have any red roses in my garden.  I actually prefer yellow ones.


When I first met roses
A little black dress might be a wardrobe staple these days but for a schoolgirl in the 1960s a white dress was a must.  And for special occasions, like the school concert or high school speech night, also a perfect red rose bud with feathery fern pinned to the bodice of that best white dress.

Rose bushes bordered the garden, one for each member of the family. The red one was Mum's bush. Mine a scrawny pink one.  The boys claimed the beautiful yellow. The fern grew at the corner of the old wash house.


That's me age 13, in my best white dress and with a swag of academic prizes collected at the high school speech night.  I'm not wearing the red rose bud because this was taken a day or so later.

Reflection:
Isaiah 1:18
“Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Ancient


They say cycads are the most ancient of plants living on from the days of dinosours. Mine is pushing up its annual set of new fronds right now.

Reflection:
Psalm 44:1
"We have heard it with our ears, O God;
our ancestors have told us
what you did in their days,
in days long ago."


Participating in the weekly Psalm challenge by Robert in Athens.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Dreaming


I used to have a lot more fuchsias in my garden.  They are quite hardy but the drought knocked them back.  This one survived and flowers at this time of year, making my heart dance.

When I first met fushias
Feminine needlecraft flourished when I was a child. A good country woman could embroider, knit crochet, sew clothes, mend and darn.   While I was trained to be nimble with a needle I could only sigh at the neat dainty stitches of Nana, Mum, my smiling aunts and big sister.

Starting on a pristine new piece, I dreamed that this would be beautifully realistic and one day adorn the duchess.

"What are these flowers?" I asked Mum.

"Fushias," she said.  "They are very pretty flowers that don't grow much up here." Such things were always said with a wistfulness that signalled that she too was dreaming ... of her old life 'back home' in Melbourne where unlike Queensland there were seasons, sisters and city delights.

The fuchsias lie unfinished in my needlework box. Fondling them today my fingers itch to fill in their bright colours. I dream on.


Nana sitting on the back step in the sunshine knitting.

Reflection:
Ephesians 3:20 The Message
"God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us."




Sunday, January 8, 2012

Lead me


The tall stemmed agapanthus are now beginning to flower all around the garden.  Most are blue but we have this growing clump of white ones beside the house.

Reflection:
Psalm 43:3 New International Version.
"Send me your light and your faithful care,
let them lead me;
let them bring me to your holy mountain,
to the place where you dwell."

I have decided to participate in the weekly Psalm challenge sponsored by Robert at Daily Athens Photo.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Begonias


Begonias are one of my favourite flowers here at Burnbrae.  They flower so willingly and for such a long time, though they do have brittle stems and now the cherry tree is growing bigger are finding the shade a little too dense.


When I first met begonias

"Lil, your children a breaking my begonias again," Grandma grumbled.  

The truth is I cared very little about those tallish plants with spotty leaves, dangly flowers and names like Bleeding Heart and Bethlehem Star -- the perfect match with Grandma's elderly piety. So I wonder what possessed Grandad to paint the path in a candy box of colours and diamond shapes, enticing a little girl's hop-scotchy feet.  

Mounted on the lintel above the gate to that path of great temptation was the yolk from Grandad's bullock team. He was a gentle upright man. His was a team that bent to the will of their bullocky without the need for swearing.

Grandad's Bullock Team


Reflection:
Matthew 11:28-30 New International Version (NIV)
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New broom


It's like a jungle out there in the garden ... so much rain.  I've been using the Christmas break to get to some belated Spring cleaning inside and out.  And today we have a shiny New Year too.

It's always nice to try something a little different as well as continuing with the tried and true so this year I am going to add a mid-week post where I do a little reminiscing with recollections of when I first 'met' the flowers I find in my garden.  Do you remember the first time you noticed, really noticed, an azalea, camelia or forget-me-not?  Or perhaps an old fashioned violet or carnation brings back some fragrant memory from the past.  I'm going to dig up these stories and dig into my boxes of photos and memorabilia .., so much more fun than digging in the garden.

Happy New Year to each of you.  May it be one full of great blessings -- I'm excited and eager for the new things the Lord has in store.


Reflection:
“This is what the LORD says— he who made a way through the sea, a path through the mighty waters, “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” Isaiah 43:16, 18-19 NIV