A few days ago a friend stopped by and gave me a bag of apples she had just picked – she had more than she needed and knew I would have use for them. Then yesterday my mother asked if I could help her pick apples at my grandmother’s today. We picked what we could reach, and came away with more than enough to satisfy all of us. Then this afternoon, I thought I better pick the last few tomatoes on my plants before the frost gets to them and I filled a basket with what I thought was going to be a couple handfuls. All of this had me amazed at the blessings of bounty.
Sometimes it is easy to get caught up in worry, or struggle with a lack of time and finances and wonder how will everything possibly come together in the end. Yet blessings abound in one way or another for all of us and they become visible when we choose to put our focus on the good around us instead dwelling on the negative. It might be a kind word spoken, a door held open by a stranger when our arms are full, or simply being thankful we woke up this morning.
I find some of my greatest lessons from the garden. As I was harvesting a few things I was thinking about what grew well this year and what didn’t. I had one measly green bean from the one plant that survived the onslaught of slugs, but more potatoes than I had expected. An animal had a great feast on my corn, but I enjoyed peas for weeks. Life isn’t always the way we expect it to turn out, but that just gives room for unexpected blessings.
There is a song written by Annie Flint that expresses my thoughts better than I am able to put into words:
He giveth more grace when the burdens grow greater,
He sendeth more strength when the labours increase;
To added afflictions He addeth His mercy,
To multiplied trials, His multiplied peace.
When we have exhausted our store of endurance,
When our strength has failed ere the day is half done,
When we reach the end of our hoarded resources
Our Father’s full giving is only begun.
Fear not that thy need shall exceed His provision,
Our God ever yearns His resources to share;
Lean hard on the arm everlasting, availing;
The Father both thee and thy load will up-bear.
His love has no limits, His grace has no measure,
His power no boundary known unto men;
For out of His infinite riches in Jesus
He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again.
Psalms 104:28 says “What You give them, they gather in; You open Your hand, they are filled with good.”