I must confess to envying the pictures of English gardens that abound in a riot of colors and blossoms. I see large swaths of your flower beds that seem to have many things blooming at the same time. They are spectacular.
With a very long growing season, my Coastal South garden spreads thin its blooms like jelly on toast. You see splotches of color among a sea of green. The upside to this condition is that, with careful planning, I have something blooming in my yard 365 days in the year.
The staples are long-blooming summer shrubs like hydrangeas and altheas. Although the beautiful blues of hydrangeas have begun to fade to a greenish color now, they dry to brown puffs that add interest to the landscape in winter. The althea blooms drop off before they discolor.
I also have a few crepe myrtles that bloom for several weeks. I did a Six on Saturday last summer just on these lovely small trees.
Numerous times this summer I’ve come across this fellow, cleverly disguised among the leaves and mulch. He really seems to get around, since I’ve seen him in many places in my yard.
Don’t ruin my delusion by telling me there could be more than one of him.
I know it’s harmless, but it scares me every time. It runs from Shep and me, so it must be scared of us as well.
Knowing there are snakes who live in my yard can’t stop me from doing things that need to be done out there. I think twice before reaching my hand into a weedy patch in the flower bed. I try to watch my steps. I’m aware snakes are out there, but they’re often invisible to me until they move.
But it’s my yard. I’m the human. I live here too. I’m going to make some noise and stomp around so they get out of my way, before I even know they’re there.
We can’t live in fear of the evils that surround us. We can’t bow down to all the “what ifs” that can cripple us. Keep your eyes open. Be informed. Take reasonable precautions. Stay prayed-up.
1 John 4:4 says: Children, you belong to God, and you have defeated these enemies. God’s Spirit is in you and is more powerful than the one that is in the world. (CEV)
With the Lord’s help, face your battles one by one with courage. We’ve read the last chapter and know the final outcome. Just be sure who’s side you’re on.
And look for the beautiful all along the way, because it’s surely there.
Here’s a little splotch of color from a hardy begonia. They seem to volunteer and tuck themselves into little spots that need them most.
Have a blessed week.