A Work in Blueberries
by Jody Evans
“Wow!” Sophie exclaimed as she gazed over the many blueberry bushes planted in our yard.
“Are these the ones we planted at the farm?”
“Yeah,” Greg said. “We moved them here.”
“After we dug all those holes,” Hunter moaned, recalling the day we had the kids dig holes for our plethora of blueberry bushes.
“I remember that,” Parker added, with lackluster enthusiasm. “It was horrible.”
“It wasn’t that bad,” Sophie said.
Parker shot her a look and sighed.
I looked at the blueberry bushes, all different sizes even though we had planted them at the same time.
“I remember digging at a spot that even Greg couldn’t break ground,” Hunter boasted.
“That’s a lie!” Greg replied, smiling.
We continued surveying the bushes and reminiscing about a distant memory tied to these plants.
“I dug most of the holes,” Elijah bragged.
“Now that really is a lie!” Seth chirped in. Elijah shoved Seth who stumbled over a mound of mulch.
I looked at the kids as they stood among the bushes. Those small shrubs we had planted had grown three times their size, some bigger than others while a few had more growth in their branches than others.
Much like the blueberry bushes, our children had grown so much, too. Each person was developing in his or her own way, finding unique paths to journey, experiencing joys and heartaches along the way.
I felt a mix of emotions, a longing for a slowing down of time, and yet still a looking forward to the growth in each individual to come. I felt a bit shameful for expecting them to be at a certain maturity at specific ages. I forgot that everyone has his or her own way to travel and grow.
“We’re going to have a lot of blueberries this year,” Sophie declared.
“We just have to keep the blackberry shoots from coming up,” Greg said. “And we need to make sure to water them.”
Then Greg said something that made me think of our children, of each other. I turned away to keep them from seeing my tearful eyes.
“With a little care, a little time, and a prayer now and then, these blueberry bushes will do just fine.”
With a little care, a little time, and a prayer now and then, these children will do just fine. We will do just fine.
“Can we make blueberry jam?” Sophie asked.
“I want to make blueberry syrup.” Parker added.
“I hate blueberries,” Hunter remarked.
We headed back inside, leaving the blueberry bushes to grow and eventually produce some magical fruit for stories about making jam or syrup or maybe sneaking one in a pancake or muffin for someone who doesn’t like blueberries. Either way, those bushes aren’t finished producing fruit, much like these children aren’t finished becoming exactly who God has purposed them to be.
4. Philippians 1:6 I am sure of this, that He who started a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.