Well, I told you about the cucumbers in my garden … today it’s the tomatoes. I love tomatoes, and last year I planted four tomato plants. And they were growing great – the best they ever had before. They totally outgrew their cages, and were expanding everywhere. And they were loaded with little green tomatoes. But here’s the kicker – for the longest time, they were all GREEN.
Loads of little green tomatoes, covering the branches and vines. They were there – so many little tomatoes, just waiting to be harvested. But they aren’t ripe yet. And I hate waiting! I can remember the taste of those fresh-from-the-garden tomatoes from the previous year, and I wanted to taste that again. But they weren’t ready yet. And I had to go out, day after day, and look at little green tomatoes.
Can you guess what this is teaching me? Yup – patience.
Two weeks of waiting patiently (more or less) for the tomatoes to ripen. Hearing how everyone else was seeing their gardens come alive with produce, and trying to be patient. Waiting for these tomatoes reminds me of having to sometimes wait for God to work in our lives – seeing the work begin, knowing that there will be “fruit” produced, but having to wait for the end result. Wanting so much to see the “harvest.”
“Rejoice, you people of Jerusalem! Rejoice in the LORD your God! For the rain he sends demonstrates his faithfulness. Once more the autumn rains will come, as well as the rains of spring. The threshing floors will again be piled high with grain, and the presses will overflow with new wine and olive oil. The LORD says, “I will give you back what you lost to the swarming locusts, the hopping locusts, the stripping locusts, and the cutting locusts. It was I who sent this great destroying army against you. Once again you will have all the food you want, and you will praise the LORD your God, who does these miracles for you. Never again will my people be disgraced.” – Joel 2:23-26
It’s like waiting for the restoration that God promises us. The restoration from the grief and the pain. God promises that He will restore to us what has been lost. And we take Him at His word. We know it will happen – we trust Him to keep His promise. But we must wait. And that takes patience. Unfortunately, something I have in short supply too often. But I can look back and see how God is gently weaving His lessons into my life.
So God uses my garden to teach me stuff. 🙂