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Confessions of a Failed Gardener

Thursday, 4 September, 2014 - 11:44 pm

I confess -- I am a failed gardener. I admit it. 

In my past, I was fixated on creating a lush green vegetable garden overflowing with G-d’s bounty. I yearned to feel that special feeling of contentment, eating 'by the sweat of my brow'.  

But there was only one problem…DSC02701.JPG

Year after year, the aphids got my zucchini plants, disease got to my tomato plants, and fungi never quite allowed the melons to do anything other than disappoint. My wife kept reminding me that the stuff tasted better at the store – and I had to admit (secretly) that she was right!

But this only helped fuel my obsession to make next year’s garden successful. This will be the year of the ‘Vegetable Garden Messiah’. It was only because of my son Shmuli’s Bar Mitzva this past spring, that our family was spared the vegetable garden drama this year.

Alas – last week, I hit rock bottom. 

You know that pile of broken furniture that you hide from your visitors’ and guests’ view --while you are waiting for the extra garbage pick-up day? Oh, it’s only me?

Anyhow, this past Thursday, my son Shlomo excitedly announced that he found growing under THAT pile, a HEALTHY and LUSH ‘Tomato Plant’! Without my tender love and care and without being obsessively watered and tended to—a lush HEALTHY tomato plant had mysteriously erupted beneath the broken benches and random wooden backyard stuff.

And then it hit me. Hashem had managed to provide a healthly plant, where my best efforts for an impressive garden fell woefully short.

Perhaps there is a three-fold message here:

First of all -- never take out the garbage (Miriam--Just kidding!)

Secondly -- We need to know that despite our best efforts, it is Hashem that makes us successful. Even in our successful life-endeavors, give it up to the true Maestro, who coordinates the musical movements of life.

And lastly, in the mounds of the broken aspects of our lives--the past mistakes that we regret--Hashem can make lush garden patches grow forth. That is, so long as we allow Him to.

A little humble pie will certainly help this failed gardener…until next Spring!

Shabbat Shalom,

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