Right now, both my front and back yards are various shades of brown. The sky is a light grey, which is an improvement over the charcoal grey storm clouds that were there this morning. Now is also the time when those in the know do what would seem odd at best to those unfamiliar with the concept. If you had never heard of it before, imagine how crazy it would seem to dig holes and place tiny brown dots into the ground with the belief that they will turn into something beautiful.
When others doubt, gardeners have faith. It doesn't just take faith to plow and plant. It takes faith to go back day after day after day to water dirt. It can take weeks for even tiny seedlings to sprout, and those who are unaware of that or lack the commitment to see the process through often give up too soon. Who can blame them? Birds come to eat the tiny specks. Some seeds don't sprout at all. Weeds can crowd out any seedlings that might emerge. When they do, rabbits and deer eat their fresh green leaves. Gardeners get aches, pains and blisters and may smell like fertilizer too!
Still, if they have planted enough to compensate for the inevitable losses and are diligent to weed, feed and protect those that survive, they will enjoy a bountiful harvest of flowers, fruits and vegetables.
There are many times in our lives when it can feel like we're watering dirt. It can feel crazy to hope for something beautiful out of something tiny and drab. We shouldn't give up. Miracles do exist. They almost always take work, blisters and faith, but they are all around us when seemingly worthless specks transform into beauty and sustenance.
by Karine Oswalt