Recently while surfing Instagram I came across one of my favorites @peopleneedflowers (Erin Hendricks) . Erin offers a roadside flower cart near my old stomping grounds in Ohio. She operates on the trust system, a word that seems obsolete in today’s society. One of the reasons I follow Erin is because she uses her flowers to bless people. Obviously, she isn’t out to make millions, but a few times during the growing season she has help in putting together small bouquets of her fresh cuts and takes them to local care facilities to be distributed to the lonely, forgotten and suffering. The grace of her charism for beauty fills more than just the “cup” of mason jars for her followers. She is using her gifts to bless those around her and make the world a better place–the modern superhero–using what we have, where we are in the moment.
Recently, Erin posted she was amending the soil for next year’s growth. I had just been outside pulling up plants in my back yard with my little wheelbarrow, watching the last of the bright orange autumn leaves pour down like tears out of the trees on a southerly wind. When I read Erin’s post however, I was reminded it wasn’t the end of my favorite season, but a time of preparation for the next season.
Soil amendments are materials which are worked into the soil to enhance the soil’s physical properties.https://www.thespruce.com/soil-amendments-1402460
When amending soil, rich nutrients are added. If you are in need of nutrients, seek the sacraments, good spiritual readings, and the fellowship of those who seem to have the relationship with God that you desire for yourself.
As we head toward Advent, the church’s readings guide us toward keeping our eyes fixed on Christ and his Kingdom. It’s been said our lives on earth are the vessel by which we sail to eternity; not the destination itself. To reorient ourselves toward our true destination, let’s do an amending of our spiritual soil with a short examination of conscience. Spend a few minutes re-balancing the “ph” levels of your spirit with the following:
How long has it been since you have been to confession? It is recommended we go at least once a month. Maybe you don’t consider yourself to be a “bad person” compared to the rest of the world, but we don’t compare ourselves there. We seek to align ourselves to Christ and his holiness. We must remember the sacrament is one of healing. What are you depriving yourself of by not going? Seek silence and ask the Holy Spirit to convict you of what needs confessed. Yank those dead plants out.
When’s the last time you were on a retreat? Have you ever tried entering into silence? You would not believe how your soul was created for it.
This is where we till the soil of our hearts. The fresh soil in which the most illustrious seeds are planted. Seeds that bear fruit all year.
If you have trouble with finding silence in your life (another kind of pandemic these days) try out the Hallow app. There is no cost to begin and it can help you develop the most important practice of all, which is listening to God’s voice in the silence of your heart.