Michael Kelley: A Garden of Gratitude

My wife and I decided to plant a garden one summer — a for-real, grow-stuff-you-can-eat garden.

We gathered seeds for tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and a few other things, we tilled the patch of soil, we repaired the critter fence around the area that had fallen into disrepair, we dug holes, planted seeds and then waited.

And waited.

Every day I would come home and ask the kids if anything had grown yet. It had not. Until one day there was the smallest, green shoot coming out of the ground. We watched it and other green shoots, being careful to water them but not too much while fighting off the weeds that would try to grow around them until they would eventually bear fruit.

From the time we began to plant until the day we ate the first tomato was around three months. Not a terribly long time in the grand scheme of things, but pretty long when you’re watching a clump of dirt every day.

Cultivation – preparing, promoting and developing the growth of someone or something — takes time. And intentionality. And effort. That’s true if you’re cultivating a garden, but it’s also true if you want to cultivate a characteristic in your life such as gratitude.

When I think of gratitude, I don’t want my life to only have brief spurts of thanksgiving; I want to actually be grateful — to live and breathe gratitude.

Thanksgiving that grows up all over my heart and soul emanates from the core of who I am. If, by the Spirit and grace of God, it can actually be cultivated in our lives, what active steps can we take toward that end? Here are three such actions:

Click here to read more.
Source: Baptist Press