...if you have a backyard and a kitchen, this blog might be for you!

a chronicle of tips and recipes on everything from gardening to canning and baking your produce, even if you're planted in suburbia...in fact, especially if you are planted in suburbia.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sabbath Rest...the Fragrance of a Life Bittersweet

See the new and deeply fragrant blossoms in my wildflower garden? Many days they've been rising to statuesque heights, as flowers go--but no blossoms appeared.

"Are you sure those aren't weeds?" my husband asked dubiously.

"Let's wait and see," I answered.

These flowers came from an indefinite seed mix--we had no idea what would be growing.
I'm glad we didn't presume the worst, for their fragrance is delightful.

They put me in mind of a devotional--once again from the little book, Streams in the Desert--that I'll leave you with today.

"We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God. (Acts 14:22)

The best things in life are the result of being wounded. Wheat must be crushed before becoming bread, and incense must be burned by fire before its fragrance is set free. The earth must be broken with a sharp plow before being ready to receive the seed...the sweetest joys of life are the fruits of sorrow. Human nature seems to need suffering to make it fit to be a blessing to the world.

Beside my cottage door it grows,
The loveliest, daintiest flower that blows,
A sweetbrier rose.

At dewy morn or twilight's close,
The rarest perfume from it flows,
This strange wild rose.

But when the raindrops on it beat,
Ah, then, its odors grow more sweet.
About my feet.

Often with loving tenderness,
Its soft green leaves I gently press,
In sweet caress.

A still more wondrous fragrance flows,
The more my fingers close
And crush the rose.

Dear Lord, oh, let my life be so
Its perfume when strong winds blow,
The sweeter flow.

And should it be Your blessed will,
With crushing grief my soul to fill.
Press harder still.

And while its dying fragrance flows
I'll whisper low, "He loves and knows
His crushed brier rose."

"If you want to be a person of consolation, if you want to share the priestly gift of sympathy, if you desire to go beyond giving commonplace comfort to a heart that is tempted, and if you long to go through the daily exchange of life with the kind of tact that never inflicts pain, then you must be prepared to pay the price for a costly education--for like Christ, you must suffer."
Frederick William Robertson.

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