Saturday, 27 February 2016

Labour in Vain.

Moonlight Along the Shore.

As another week draws to a closeI can look back with some sense achievement. It started rather badly with me having on of my dark moments or days. I have those from time to time when everything seems futile and uncreative. Fortunately this did not last long and the week progressed well.

I painted an abstract. Not sure it is going to rock the world. In fact a dear friend asked if it was a painting of a door. So there you go I do not think it is going to set the art world on fire or open many if any doors for me. 

The other painting I did this week was much more taxing on the body and certainly took many hours. There is a wall round my house that had balls on each pillar. The wall was painted a horrible yellow and the balls were all of differing sizes and shapes.

Now the balls have gone. The wall has been wire brushed and painted a lovely shade of pebble. No longer do I walk towards the house and fringe. My legs are still painful after all the bending and whatever else muscle use was involved.


It is done and I am happy with the result of the effort.

Life is not always so obviously satisfying.  let me share a true tale with you.

There was a young woman who took great pride in the growth and care of the flowers in her flower garden. She had been raised by her grandmother who taught her to love and care for flowers as she herself had done. 

So, like her grandmother, her flower garden was second to none. 

One day while looking through a flower catalogue she often ordered from, a picture of a plant immediately caught her eye. She had never seen blooms on a flower like that before. 

“I just have to have it,” she said to herself, and she immediately ordered it. 

When it arrived, she already had a place prepared to plant it. She planted it at the base of a stone wall at the back of her yard. It grew vigorously, with beautiful green leaves all over it, but there were no blooms. Day after day she continued to cultivate it, water it, feed it, and she even talked to it attempting to coax it to bloom. But, it was to no avail.

One morning weeks later, as she stood before the vine, she contemplated how disappointed she was that her plant had not bloomed. She was giving considerable thought to cutting it down and planting something else in its place. 

It was at this point that her invalid neighbor, whose garden joined hers, called over the wall to her. 

“Thank you so much! You can’t imagine how much I have enjoyed the blooms of that vine you planted.” 

The young woman walked through the gate into her neighbor’s yard, and sure enough, she saw that on the other side of the wall the vine was filled with blooms. 

There were indeed the most beautiful blooms she had ever seen. The vine had crept through the crevices and it had not flowered on her side of the fence, it had flowered luxuriantly on the other side.

Just because you cannot see the good result of your labour does not mean that it bore no fruit.

The little seed of hope you planted. The little portion of love you shared. The small plant of learning you gave to another. You just never know how much that has grown and bloomed. Having been in the jobs of preaching and teaching I often rejoice in the little words of those I have shared with over the years. To know that you labour not in vain.

But for anything of worth to grow you must continue to offer  yourself looking for nothing in return.

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