Wednesday, December 21, 2016

They're Just Bell Peppers

Psalm 92:12-15
"The righteous will flourish like a palm tree,
they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon;
planted in the house of the Lord,
they will flourish in the courts of our God.
They will still bear fruit in old age,
they will stay fresh and green,
proclaiming, “The Lord is upright;
he is my Rock, and there is no wickedness in him.”

They're only green bell peppers, not palm trees or cedars.

They're not planted by streams of water, but by my driveway.

They're old, for bell pepper plants anyway.

Psalm 1:3
"That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither—whatever they do prospers."

The leaves are withered, but still these are the verses I thought of this morning after the freeze last night; after I noticed six peppers fresh and green dangling in the cold air from sturdy stems but beneath the withered and weathered sag which happens with age in this strip of garden.

And in this bit of me.

It happens in the courts of nature but somehow, sometimes, fruit flourishes even still. Even in old age.

I peel wilted thin leaves from fresh plump fruit, and watch cold air catch my breath and hold it before it thins and vanishes and I breathe again.

The cold, it thins.

I hope to bear fruit in old age-even as my skin thins.

I hope to be found delighting in the law of the Lord and meditating on it day and night. Maybe this, too, is a thin place in a world thick with noise, information, wealth and poverty and plans and desires for more.

Maybe cold air is a thin place where the courts of God are glimpsed through frost-bitten foliage.

I touch a pepper fresh and green, and remember what God says about faith and hope. Faith is the substance of things hoped for.

I feel it like this-I hope to flourish in the courts of my God.

written by: Carolyn-Elizabeth Roehrig

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