Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Things Not Seen

He who plants a seed beneath the sod
and waits to see, believes in God.

I lay awake last night thinking of two things: the onion sets in the laundry that desperately needed to be planted, and a Bible verse about faith. Yes, faith. As in, Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. (Hebrews 11:1) I explained away these seemingly unrelated thoughts on my decision to stay up late and watch a Hallmark movie, (although it did feature oranges, not onions). Regardless, it was a long, quiet night.

After drifting through several messy situations this morning, I came home this afternoon to find a sunny and warm garden. Thrilling, is what it was. I was almost quivering with excitement. I get an enormous kick out of planting things. (Proof: click here.) On came the garden boots, out came the hoe, and crazy went the gardening girl. Moments later, as I gently separated little onions and turned over the earth where they were to be planted, I found myself repeating that verse again. Faith is the substance of things hoped for.... "Am I missing something?" I thought aloud to myself.

An hour or so later, both onion sets - white and sweet - were in the ground. Beneath the sod. As I lay down to take a picture of my newly planted onions, all the thoughts of the previous night rained down on me again, and after I snapped this picture, I rested my face on the sweet, cool grass and cried.

Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.... There it was. My answer. With all the grief and the soul-baring questions that have swirled around in my head since my marriage ended last month, I have diverted many late night moments into gardening planning sessions. Into ordering seeds and plants and catalogues online. And suddenly, as I lay in the grass this afternoon, staring at my planted onion sets, it hit me: I have no idea whether these onions will actually grow. Whether they'll really develop. Planting is, in and of itself then, a belief in God. (For me, anyway.) It's an act of faith. And what is faith, exactly? Faith is... well, it's... the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. My onions and roses and blueberries and arugula and lettuce... they are all substance... they are all evidence... of faith.

There are so many things we hope for. Wish for. Pray for. And there are so many things we can't see... can't grasp... and don't understand (and maybe never will). But faith ... faith is where we hang our hat. What we offer up as evidence. Faith is why we plant onions.

There are a number of things in my life, today, that remain unseen. Will my little crops survive coming frosts/droughts? Will I find the money for a new roof? Will I survive this heartbreak to thrive again? Likely, likely, and likely. Why? Like I realized while on my face gazing at onions today, it's because I have faith. I've been blessed with the substance of faith. And that, my friends, is sometimes all we need to face these things not seen.


Anonymous said...

Brin, Have faith in yourself; believe in yourself. Live for the moment, one day at a time; one day you will wake up and realize that you are really happy again. You have friends that love you. And go out into the sunshine as often as you can; it is good for you!

Anonymous said...

Brin, I loved your post today. I know some of what you are feeling. It's been five months since my divorce and I'm just now coming out of the fog. I think I had to go through a period of grief...grieving what my marriage could have been, not what it was. God is holding you in His hands just like He held me and is still holding me. Through the process, I have felt His presence like I never have before. I think that even when I'm going through something bad, I try to really "live" the journey, and I try to figure out what God is telling me, or showing me, and I try to see how my character is being built. I don't mean to ramble on, but I wanted to show my support and say, hey you're not alone and you're cared for. -Linda, the Tulsa gal