Now no shrub of the field was yet in the earth, and no plant of the field had yet sprouted, for the LORD God had not sent rain upon the earth, and there was no man to cultivate the ground.
The LORD God planted a garden toward the east, in Eden; and there He placed the man whom He had formed. Genesis 2:8
As I read this passage, I was caught by many things. The first of those was the character of our God. God is the Master Cultivator. He is one that is not only willing to plant, but plants with the intent to sustain. He is meticulous about His ways, taking the proper steps to make sure what He creates will have what it needs to sustain it.
Here, we see a cycle of creation, in that God created man to sustain the garden and the garden to sustain the man. I looked into self and asked myself the question, “Am I creating things that will sustain me, and am I sustaining the things I create?” God designed a relationship that would be mutually beneficial; in that the love and care that the man would place into the garden would produce a fine yield, and that yield would reward him by being sustenance to him. God made it that the man would have to nurture and care for the grounds, protecting it, cleaning it, serving it, and sharing it. Man was to care for creation as creation cared for him.
I thought to myself, “There are too many Neglected Grounds! And these ground are becoming “Fields”. Grounds are places that have been created to produce. Places God has water. Places God has given seed. And last, a place where God has placed a man to cultivate. God created a field, placed seed in it, showered over it, not just to produce shrubs and trees, but a lush garden, that would feed the man and also bring glory to God by showing forth His character and beautiful creation.
Not only are there “Neglected Grounds” but there are “Abused Grounds”. Lately, we have born witness to productive grounds that have become fields, not for the lack of a man to cultivate, but the lake of a man to care while cultivating. God even designed that the land would have time to rest, that it might be able to replenish via His process and design and be even more fruitful and productive for the man He placed in it. Yet, we have men and women who have been blessed with Grounds, who through a lack of gentleness and care have turned a beautiful garden into a field. Gardens require care and attention, and suffer from corruption and anger.
Though a gardener has the task of tilling the soil, the remainder of his efforts are spent paying attention to his land. He watches and waits patiently, as He performs daily duties to the ground and the eventual crop, even caring for the animals he has been entrusted with to care for the grounds. His care ensures that the plants and animals get the attention and love they need to be productive, and though they are trained by him, any abuse from him can stall productivity. Thus, they take the time to name the animals. This to remind them that they are more than animals. They like man, are a partner in creation and must be cared for as they render their abilities to aide in caring for the garden which cares for the man. We must be sure to maintain proper care and perspective of all things placed for us to steward, that we can be productive with what God has entrusted us with.
The reality is, Neglected Grounds become a Field. God can send rain upon our fields, but our handling of the fields we have been entrusted with, determine whether they become the beautiful gardens God intended for them to become. I want to challenge each reader to pour attention and care into the field in which you have been entrusted. It is filled with potential, and with a little hard work and care, can be a lush place, filled with plants and vegetation plenteous enough to provide for you and for others.