Tuesday, May 25, 2010

One Tenth of Everything

We've got one of those yards that is more clover than grass right now, especially in the back. We laugh because we can imagine the golf course maintenance guys coming over any minute to ask us if we could please get that under control so it doesn't spread to the green. The clover everwhere in Knoxville is flowering with soft, round, white flowers and kids are loving it. With dandelions done, it's the next best treasure to offer mom or dad.

I like that kids pick flowers spontaneously and offer them to adults. I like that kids really honestly think it's something special to give another person a colorful plant grabbed straight from the earth. Usually the flowers are weeds, although occasionally they are plucked from the neighbor's garden. The kids don't know the weeds are pests or to be avoided. All they know is the flower is colorful and it makes adults smile. Similarly, offering up one of the neighbor's tulips does not harm the garden but creates another glad event.

As I drove into the driveway last night I noticed our Magnolia was blooming, and there was one white flower hanging within arm's reach. It appeared as if the tree itself were reaching down and offering the flower to whoever would come and take it. It occured to me then that although we technically own the land where that tree goes, we have not ourselves produced the flower that it gives. We don't know how to make flowers!

This is the basis of stewardship, I think. Recognizing that we are not entitled to the land where we live but that we are recipients of its good graces.

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