Tag Archives: gardening

Intentional June – Connecting Gardening to God’s Glory, Week 4

Connecting Gardening to Gods glory

In June, I am picking a relevant scripture each week to focus on. My conversations with my kids will be about the verses, and bonus! – I’ve picked a craft to help us (and you!) talk through spiritual things.

Don’t forget – you’re the primary influencer in your kids’ lives, so be intentional about sharing God’s truths with them! I’d love to hear if you have success with these. Share in the comments!

Week 4 – Our Summer Experiment

We started an experiment at the beginning of this month. I asked the kiddos where they thought a baby seedling would grow the best – in a pot or in the garden bed?

summer experiment

We talked about the scientific method and hypotheses. What we didn’t talk about was gardening – we do that quite a lot around here (I post some pics on my Instagram), so they’re pretty familiar with the life cycle of a plant.

But how can I connect this to the Bible? There are plenty of ways to talk about plants and Scripture: new life, God’s providence, creation, His order.

But I wanted to talk about growing in godliness. That though Jesus has completed the work of salvation on the cross, God has still given us a life to live for his glory and to produce fruit (i.e., make disciples) – hallelujah for our mission!

Scripture focus:

 For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith excellence, to excellence, knowledge; to knowledge, self-control; to self-control, perseverance; to perseverance, godliness; to godliness, brotherly affection; to brotherly affection, unselfish love. For if these things are really yours and are continually increasing, they will keep you from becoming ineffective and unproductive in your pursuit of knowing our Lord Jesus Christ more intimately. (1 Peter 5:5-8, NET)

I love the connection here – we’re growing in godliness, “increasing in measure” just like a plant. When we put on godly qualities, we will be more productive in our relationship with Christ! We will actually be more intimate with him! Amazing!

I really want to emphasize with my kids that our salvation is sure, and we still have a mission on this earth – to give God glory in every way!

DIY Citrus Oil to Get Rid of Mosquitos (You Tubesday)

Every Tuesday (starting today!), I’m going to share one of my YouTube videos. I created a channel not only to share videos of spiritual encouragement, but also to share my ideas for daily stewardship.

So far I’ve created videos for recipes, gardening, family management, cloth diapering, encouraging your husband, and discipling your kids! Subscribe to my channel here.

Today, I’m sharing how I keep the mosquitoes out of my yard. It’s an organic gardening recipe for citrus oil, which kills mosquito eggs as far as I understand. I spray it in my yard every 2-4 weeks, and I see a noticeable difference in the mosquitoes!

I hope you find it useful; feel free to leave questions in the comments.

Spring Weeding + Miracle Gro Giveaway

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Scotts® for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

Here in Austin, I’ve discovered that we have this lovely (not) weed called milkweed. I honestly don’t remember them from last year, but I remember them from the year before. And this year, since we lost a lot of our grass to a terrible drought, we had A.LOT. of milkweed.

Pretty much half of our backyward looked like this. And we knew we had to get those weeds out of there if we want grass … and less milkweed … to grow back.

What you have to understand is that this stuff is nasty. It’s prickly, it’s thick, it’s spiky, it’s well-rooted, and it’s poisonous.

It reminds me a lot of sin.

One cold, sunny Saturday, I went back there to pull up as much as I could, and I just couldn’t shake the parallels to sin. Here are some things that came to mind:

  • Sin is painful. We actually call these “spiky weeds” – just what you want in the yard of a 2-year old, huh? When they’re dry, they can slice your finger open (trust me).
  • Sin chokes out life. By its very nature, this plant is taking up space, a lot of it. Nothing else can grow until it’s ripped out.
  • Sin takes root. And needs to be removed at the root. And oh buddy, these roots are thick. Usually, even with the help of tools, I could not get the entire root out. But if just a superficial removal of greenery is made, nothing will change. The sin, I mean weeds, will just grow right back!
  • Sin multiplies and grows rapidly. Have you noticed this? When you let that temptation bring you into sin, it’s much easier to commit another sin against God. Because come on, you’ve already messed up – and His grace will cover it all – so why stop now?
  • Sin needs to be removed one by one. When you become a believer in Jesus, the Holy Spirit immediately begins working on your heart. But it’s not like all of your sin is eradicated all at once, or ever. You are on a journey, and that transformation takes time – sometimes it’s quicker than others.
  • Sin is more easily conquered in community. You know what I was thinking the whole time I was weeding? Boy, it sure would be nice to have another set of hands – I could get this done in half the time. Even better, what if I knew someone who had a trick to removing these things?
  • Sin is ugly. But God can use it for good! Just look at my yard – not yard of the month, ya know? So I googled “milkweed austin texas” to see what kind of tirades people went on and on about with these things, and guess what I learned? They are the exclusive food of the monarch butterfly’s larvae. Yeah. Just like our sin is nasty – but we can rejoice that we have a God of hope, who can redeem anything and uses it for His glory!

  • Sin will be a struggle until we enter the kingdom of heaven, but fighting it daily allows us to rely more on God and know His will more clearly. Did you think the pic above was I’m finished! ? Nope – that’s just the one little area I cleared out! The rest of my yard was still overgrown with them. But now, this area has room to grow grass.

Like all illustrations, this isn’t perfect, but it really gave me a glimpse into some practical truths about our sin nature. At the end of the day, though, here is what I’m resting in:

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! (2 Corinthians 5:17, NIV)

And remember – God has given us this blessing of reconciling us to Himself so that we can share that great news with others (5:18-19)!

Related to my spring weeding, let’s have a giveaway!

EnG Product Shot.png

Miracle Gro has come out with a new product called Expand ‘n Gro™– it’s a planting mix that is all-natural (made of coconut fibers!) and super absorbent – so absorbent, in fact, that it expands up to 3 times it’s size when you add water. The all-natural fibers add nutrients that feed your plants for up to 6 months, so you prep your spring beds, and then you don’t have to fertilize for the season – nice!

A lightweight, all-natural soil product that holds water!? They’re sending me a sample to try, and I can’t wait. Obviously, my yard needs help. Do you want to try it, too?

Just Like the Candid Pastor’s Wife on Facebook, and leave a comment below letting me know you’re a fan. You’ll be entered to win a sample to try for yourself!

Your comment must be left by midnight CST on Saturday, April 21.

See more here:
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Flubbed Dates Still Rock

Have you treated yourselves to a date recently? We did! Now, you know when you date so infrequently, something always goes a little askew, right!?

Well, Brad and I have seriously needed to redo the landscaping in the front bed. The plants were laid our haphazardly – most looking as if they had been there for at least 10 years. The shrubs were woody and overgrown, and some were half-dead. In short, everything was unhealthy, and it looked it!

We love being outside, and I personally love plants, so we kept planning and planning and planning what we were going to do out there, but we couldn’t figure out how we were going to get it all done with Samuel in tow.

It just so happened that Brad’s mom Nancy, who is a special educator, was on Spring Break, and wanted to come see Samuel, so we thought she might be able to watch him for you know, just a few hours, while we tackled some of our project.

The day before she came in, we ripped everything out. Of course, that was a chore in and of itself. Samuel ran around throwing his ball around the front yard while I trimmed the half-dead vines on the columns back as far as possible. (I had one eye on him, I swear!) Brad pulled and hacked and dug and cursed at all of the old plants in the bed until they were all outta there.

We decided it would be best if we gave the bed a good tilling before planting, so he made plans to take a half-day on Friday to get everything moving along before our dinner and a movie date that night. Nancy came in and ended up watching Samuel while I prepped for a baby shower, and Brad tilled up the bed and added fresh soil.

When Samuel woke up from his nap, we went to the garden nursery, where (thank God) Nancy watched Sammy in the hot HOT sun while I picked up lots and lots (but not enough, of course) plants.

We got home and the planting began. It was about 7:30pm when we finally got the last one planted (even though we still had more to buy!). Poor Nancy; I know she loved it, but I’m pretty sure Samuel wore her out!

I got a shower, and tried to get Samuel to bed. Well, this was the day he decided he was done nursing! So I gave him some milk and read some books, and he proceeded to not go to sleep for me. Or Brad. Or Nancy.

We got dressed and left anyway – at 9:00pm. For dinner. Haha!

We got to the steakhouse where we had a giftcard, and sat down. We received a call that Samuel was asleep, and we took a breath and relaxed.

While Brad was on that phone call, the waitress took our drink order. I ordered a beer, and she asked if I wanted a tall or a pint. Hmmm… I thought. I’m not sure what that means! In my Starbucks logic, I thought TALL might mean SMALL, and she did say tall first, so I got a tall.

You should have seen the look on my face when she brought the TALL, like T.A.L.L 2-beers-in-a-glass, to our table. It was hysterical to drink out of this giant lush-appropriate glass!

I have to say that I was kind of peeved during dinner. They didn’t “rush” us per se, but the food came so quickly that we didn’t get much time to talk. Next time, I’m going to ask them to wait an extra 10 minutes more than they give everyone else!

Want to know how super-gung-ho we were? We decided to see a movie after dinner! A 10:30pm movie! Yes! We were determined to have this date even though we were both exhausted.

We yawned and had coffee through the movie, but were glad to be together nonetheless. It’s just a treasured moment when we go out these days that what might seem like a ho-hum or even “bad” date was amazing!

Oh! And of course, I dressed up! I have to say, I get very stylish after wearing only VERY washable clothes every day of the week. I need to take pics next time! I paired black leggings with a long purple sweater-dress, a black vest, and an empire-high belt – plus some amazing black wedges I got at TJ Maxx. Aw yeah.

Have a “bad date” story to share? Link it up or leave a comment below! And if you’re looking for a date on the cheap, get some movie tickets for only $6 this week! Check the deal out here.
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