Gardens are wonderful places!

Jesus spoke to her, ‘Woman why do you weep.  Who are you looking for?’

Garden’s are very much on my mind, the Daffs are up, blossom is on the trees, and Spring is nearly here.... or as a few lines of silly verse say –

‘Sring is sprung, the grass is rizz
I wonder where the birdies is?
Some say the bird is on the wing
But that is absurd because the wing is on the bird.’

Gardens are wonderful places, full of beauty and expectation. Without people, however, they are empty and quickly become over-grown. Garden’s were meant to have people in them, who would tend them and enjoy them.

At the beginning humanity is pictured in the Garden of Eden with men and women and the Creator in harmony with one another to such an extent that God saw everything he’d made, and it ‘was very good.’

We all know that things didn’t stay that good for long. The ‘blame game’ broke out, and ever since women have been seen as the ‘instigators’ of the fall from grace that resulted in humanities alienation from God.

If Adam was anything like me, he had an equal share in God’s image, a pristine environment to live and thrive in, and an equal share in the culpability for human breakdown and responsibility to seek its healing.

There is a beautiful garden in Jerusalem that many Christians believe contains the tomb that Jesus was laid in following his crucifixion. It could be true, and is, at least a wonderful place to sit, and contemplate the words above, spoken to Mary Magdalene, one of the early followers of Jesus.

If anyone was worthy of being called a disciple, Mary was. Jesus did not treat women as others in his culture did, and it’s no surprise that Jesus honours her by appearing to her first and entrusting her with the message of his resurrection.

It was a woman -  a friend of my aunty – who first introduced me to flowers and gardens. It was another woman who first introduced me to Christ, at the end of a decade long journey, and helped me to find who I was looking for.

At All Saints’ we are working to build a welcoming garden, where all, young, old, female and male, can meet God, family and friends and enjoy something together that may remind us of the potential held in that first garden and promised again in that first ‘Easter garden’, in Jerusalem where men and women are restored to friendship with God through Jesus Christ.

Our prayer is that God may glance at our Welcome Garden, with all that may happen in it, and say – ‘it was very good’.

With Easter blessing,
Steve

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