We went to the nursery tonight for green things. We returned with a truck load. This is not our normal mid-May nursery run for geraniums or petunias to accent the landscape. This project entails uprooting and digging deeper. It’s time.

Framed by split-rail fence at the back corners of the property, sand cherries and hydrangea bushes are out of control. We’re going to try blueberries and grapes there — two varieties of each. Sweet. The plants we purchased are loaded with tiny green fruits so this year’s harvest looks promising already. We can only hope our resident feathered friends are willing to share.

And in the front, along the brick walkway, an oddball barberry and sickly spirea will soon be history. A dwarf Alberta spruce, a pair of compact spirea shrubs, and a variety of astilbe will soon take their places. We’ll add some big rocks for interest. I’m sure the Hubs is just dying for a chance to retrieve and recycle castoff fieldstone. And if not, I know he’ll be a good sport about it.

We’ve lived on this property for more than 25 years and, well, sometimes it takes more than pruning and fertilizer; sometimes it takes transplanting to keep things fresh. Oh, how satisfying to remove the overgrown or spindly and replace with vibrant and healthy.

I can’t help but notice the parallel as we join into a new church fellowship, transplanting ourselves, so to speak. One of the motivating factors has been to make an impact on the local community (remember Tony?); this church is all over that! But deep in my heart I have been pondering my role with the next generation in my own family. The as-yet unborn grandchildren can count on me for significant investment in their lives. Deep and strong roots in my faith are essential to our family’s landscape. I don’t ever want to stop growing.

The stark reality is that the best I might hope for is to be reaching the half-way point of my life. The first half has certainly been fulfilling and I have few regrets. But, God-willing, it was only the first half! I hope and pray the last half counts for at least as much.

Psalm 92:12-14

But the godly will flourish like palm trees
and grow strong like the cedars of Lebanon.
For they are transplanted to the Lord’s own house.
They flourish in the courts of our God.
Even in old age they will still produce fruit;
they will remain vital and green.

~René Morley

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