Garden Lullaby

Sometimes I’m Too Scared

The days are slowly getting shorter and while leaves are on the ground and we’ve experienced some blessed cooler weather, spring and summer lingers wherever it can in the garden.

I see it in my zinnias, in my rose bushes squeezing in every last bloom possible, the new growth on the tips, the wild grape vine heavy with grapes that make your face scrunch up tight.

September is a bit like April here.

The days can be almost perfect, but the window is short and can be sporadic. I’m soaking in every last long, gentle garden day before the world really does turn to fall and winter.

With the breeze, the trees swaying, the leaves falling and the music playing in the garden, it’s been stunning. To say the least.

It’s been in this magic garden season I taught my son how to lie down in the grass. Head down and everything. Like the green grass was your pillow. He didn’t know he could do that. He was tentative at first. But the marvel of it, his curiosity, and my persistence to help and show him how, won out.

So my rambunctious 2-year-old and I have been lying in the grass side-by-side and enjoying our lives. It’s been a highlight for him (and for me!). This new discovery of lying in the grass comes up in conversation at bedtime. He invites me to it when we go out to the garden. He just had no idea something like this existed. That grass wasn’t just for walking, but for lying down. For resting your head in it.

A flood of tears pricked my eyes when I recalled how similar I was to my son. Psalm 23. God makes me to lie down in green pastures. He is persistent I experience this rest and peace! I am laden with the cares of the world, crippled by fear, overwhelm, anxiety, or whatever it may be, but God shows me how to lie down. He helps me do it. Like I helped my son. Head down and everything. I don’t always know I can. I don’t always believe those green pastures are for me in whatever tiring season or painful thing I’m experiencing. Sometimes I’m too scared to lie down, to let my guard down, to embrace joy, to let it be happy or good, to be immersed in blessings.

But I am free to be a child.

To lie down, have a pillow made of grass, and my shoulders relieved of burden. I can spread my arms straight out, face the blue sky without fear, and be a kid. This is being in the presence of God. And God is with me always.

It is always safe to lie down.

Which is the poetic way of saying. . .safe to be, safe to enjoy God’s good gifts, safe to sleep, safe to share my emotions, safe to delight, safe to live in fullness and peace, though life may feel broken and misshapen, or on the brink of breaking. “He maketh me lie down in green pastures” is a beautiful word picture of God being a Father to us. And we are blessed when we let our hearts and souls be fathered by the Great I Am.

We are stiff and tired adults always learning what it means to be God’s children. And He is so good to us. Soon we find ourselves letting the sky be blue, soaked in laughter despite long nights ahead, at peace as though goodness and mercy follow us all the days our life. Oh wait, that’s right! They do!!

So we lie down in the green grass.

Head down and everything.


Parallel

laughter and This Is How!
Yes, even your head down in it!
two-years-old, and it’s a magic trick,

to lie down in grass
like this.
and we’re loving it,
this learning how,
such chaotic stillness,
Us
mother and son,
snowangels
in summertime.
then tears, like waves
on shoreline, gather, swell,
recede. I’m just like him.
I’ve done this before, over
and over again.
leaning back, brace for impact,
finding grass instead.
my heart beats home,
feels heavenward, oh,
peace!
so, it’s okay to laugh!
to lie down here like this,
head down
and everything.
me, a mother, a woman,
a child, me,
like this.
breathe!
“The Lord is my Shepherd;
I shall not want.
He makes me lie down
in green pastures.
He leads me beside
still waters. . “
My son and I in the garden.
September blue in the sky.
leaves I loved in flush of spring
waltz right off forever.
late summer meanders by,
and in this Parade
of seasons changing,
there’s no season
changing
here.
it’s Psalm 23,
Me Wanting For Nothing,
surely Goodness
and Mercy,
the Lord as my
Shepherd,
for all of my days,
for the Whole
of my Life forever,
breathe!

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