“I come to the garden alone

while the dew is still on the roses

And the voice I hear, falling on my ear

the voice to me is calling.

And he walks with me,

And he talks with me.

And he tells me I am His own;

And the joy we share

As we tarry there,

None other has ever known.”

These are the words of an old hymn written by Austin Miles in 1812, inspired by John chapter 20 when Mary encounters Jesus in the Garden Tomb.

I love the pattern of my day when it allows me this window of opportunity to totally be in my lane when the light is new and the dawn chorus is fading away. I’m immersed in my solitary space with the background vibrating a chorus of birdsong mixed with buzzing insects, a space amongst my plants when time stands still.

Sometimes I just meander down the paths, running my fingers over the tops of the blossoms, greeting them all with an easy “good morning.” If I could sing, I would, but I have conversations with them instead!

I bend down from my gardening stool to work the soil. It feels like the twisted kinks of life that have stiffened my back start working themselves out with each stab of my spade, with each dive into the dirt, with each nestling of a plant.

I find it unnecessary to articulate my prayers in this garden cathedral. The Holy Spirit receives my thoughts before I even utter them. I get it why Jesus went to gardens to pray! He prayed in the Garden at the Hedron Ravine in John 18:1. In Luke 22, he went out and made his way “as usual” to the Mount of Olives and asked his disciples to pray and “he himself withdrew from them, knelt down and prayed.”

Where is your prayer cathedral?

Now Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he stopped, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray. . .”

Luke 11:1

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