Tending The Garden of My Heart

The Parable of The Barren Fig Tree

Dearest Reader,

I shared the work that God has been doing in my heart. A thread of gold, unraveling, drawing me deeper into His Word.

May we start here today?

The Parable of the Barren Fig Tree – Luke 13:6-9 (CSB)

“A man had a fig tree that was planted in his vineyard. He came looking for fruit on it and found none. He told the vineyard worker, ‘Listen, for three years I have come looking for fruit on this fig tree and haven’t found any. Cut it down! Why should it even waste the soil?’

“But he replied to him, ‘Sir, leave it this year also, until I dig around it and fertilize it. Perhaps it will produce fruit next year, but if not, you can cut it down.’ “

I am not a gardener by heart, I do not care to go anywhere near dirt, worms, bugs, and, yikes, a run in with the slithering type without feet. According to my Sweet Man, this evokes “the guttural cry of terror.” (from Jaws)  Nor, am I physically able. But I love the fruit of gardening. Beautiful blooms swaying in the breeze, hummingbirds spiraling in, sipping nectar. I.Love.It.  I love the fruit of gardening. Beautiful blooms, year after year, drawing butterflies and hummingbirds. The unpleasant truth is this: I don’t want to do the work.

Digging into my soul, finding unwanted desires and thoughts is painful. Is it just me or do you grapple with this as well?

I read the words of Jesus, The Parable of the Barren Fig Tree pierces me deep. I weep at the thought of standing in the same place, year after year – “Barren of Fruit.”

In this parable, the vineyard worker has been given an extra year to work the soil around the tree. You and I have a merciful God, full of grace, who pursues us, never gives up on us. Thank goodness! However, his grace and mercy do not give us a blank credit card to tuck away, waiting for a more convenient time to tend our souls.

Soul-tending has to begin today, now.


“Change takes real intentionality like a woman bent over her garden beds every day with a spade and the determined will to grow up something good to strengthen the heart.”

Ann Voskamp – One Thousand Gifts: Dare to Live Fully Where You Are 

  • A good spade, also known as a time of lingering, praying His Word.
  • Intentionality to go back day after day after day, even if, especially if, or when I may not want to. PS: this is a good indicator I need soul work! 
  • The determination not to give up.
  • Cultivating a relationship with God.
  • Pulling the weeds. That may mean giving up some things and taking up others.
  • Sharing his faithfulness to me so others can and will come to know Jesus.

Here is what I have come to know, the more I go back, the more I grow. The more I cultivate, weed, and prune those dark, broken places in my soul, the more I want to go back.

“Taste and see that the Lord is good.” Psalm 34:8 (CSB)

Lingering carves out spaces in my heart giving way to much-needed soul-scaping. Digging, tending the soil of my heart. Lingering gives me a taste of the life that is to come, eternity with Almighty God.

I love Him. I want Him. I want to bear fruit for His Kingdom.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control.” Galations 5:22 (CSB)

Gifts of Grace

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I’m blessed to serve you in this place, to share with you the Gifts of Grace as I journey through the wilderness. I picture you across the table, hands wrapped tightly around your cup, sharing life, and laughter, and tears. As I share with you, my own daily struggles, I long to hear what yours may be. Sharing the realness of life. You can do that by commenting below or reaching out to me here.

Be sure and bookmark this page for 31 Mornings in The Word during the month of October!