Posts Tagged 'God'

Getting Dirty With Spring Planting

Today I am getting into the dirt and planting food. I’m not doing it by myself. Our housemate Scott and eight year old friend Nick are planting and getting nice and dirty with me. Big fun.

My husband Thor loves to cook (and not get dirty) so he gets excused from gardening. I don’t understand why he pulls away from the affectionate hugs I offer as I’m planting. He is so cute I keep trying anyway.

Our summer garden, 2007

We’ve got in pots on the patio: two little apple trees, a pear tree, lots of strawberry and blueberry plants, a gooseberry and a raspberry bush. It all looks like a bunch of sticks this early in the year, except for the strawberries. The Willamette Valley’s rich soil and reliable rain will help transform all these bare, spindly branches into delicious food, with the grace of God. I give a lot of credit to the Creator around the miracle of life.

Why do hours of hard physical work to grow at most a couple hundred dollars worth of food per season? Because it’s FUN! Moreover, it creates food security. City-dwellers forget that food doesn’t grow in grocery stores. Even a week-long collapse of oil or gas supplies could send us into shortages and chaos. Another way to increase our food security is to eat less, i.e. more moderately.
My favorite writer about food-growing is Barbara Kingsolver and her book and website Animal, Vegetable, Miracle.

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Confession: I Love Church

Most of us have a closeted part of ourselves, a part we don’t readily reveal. For some, it is sexual orientation, or political beliefs. But for me, it is the fact that I love church and love to worship God there, with others.

Why am I shy about this, when I am not known for shyness in general? There’s more than one reason, but just one I can tackle before I walk over to my Methodist church at 6161 SE Stark (I’m writing on Sunday morning).

A progressive church-lover in Portland, Oregon (that would be me) is somewhat like a black person in a white school — prior to integration. There are few of us, and we find ourselves on the defensive. Our progressive friends associate church with political stances toward the poor, for example, that are the polar opposite of what Jesus actually taught. My friends are outraged. And I am too, but at those political stances, not at Jesus or God.

My confession here to the secular blogoshere is that I believe with all my heart in a loving Creator that cherishes you and me and every living thing on earth. At church, I’m practicing that belief. I feel it most strongly while singing the hymns (and if you want to experience some kick-ass lyrics, just pick up a copy of the New Century Hymnal and start reading).

I tell you, a person can find both comfort and fierce joy in this church thing. Anne Lamott, one of my favorite writers, describes it well in her nonfiction books, and even makes us laugh in the process.

I am a churchgoing believer, at the same time that I’m committed to sustainability and progressive politics. That is my confession. I’ll be delighted if you post a comment. I’ll publish it after I walk back from church. Related post: Consuming Jesus and the Diamond-Cut Life.