St Mark's Mansfield

Water of Life

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Spring has really got going in the garden, although a very dry April has meant that the earth is crying out for water.   I really object to the way weather forecasters herald rain as a bad thing.   It may be inconvenient for a nice day out, but it’s so vital to life and growth.   Rain will never come at the ‘right’ time for us humans, but in these days of rapidly changing weather patterns, let’s welcome and conserve it when it does.   In the Community Garden at St Mark’s we have quite a number of water butts in place to catch the next downpour.

A barrel will be installed to save rainwater from the big greenhouse which, in its new situation behind the vicarage garage gives a heart to the garden, somewhere to grow tomatoes, nurture seeds and maybe shelter from the rain!   Many thanks to John Irons for moving and glazing it and to John O’Leary for making the base.

Our Community Garden (ie. the area around the vicarage car park) is a valuable resource for involving young people at St Mark’s.   We are very grateful to David Boot and Tristan Jones for spending May Day morning turning the compost and seeing how we recycle our vegetable waste.   A healthy compost heap is a mix of wet and dry ingredients, including garden clippings, grass cuttings, vegetable peelings, crushed egg shells, egg boxes, cardboard, sawdust, along with activators such as manure and comfrey leaves.   If you don’t have a compost heap at home, please bring your veggie kitchen waste to church.   The worms at St Mark’s will love it!

The Under Fives group has a regular garden activity on a Tuesday afternoon and last week they were decorating sticks for their flower bed.   We have erected a plastic greenhouse so that the children can safely plant and water their seeds …… and take shelter from the rain!

A passage of Scripture that first really struck me with divine meaning comes at the end of the book of Revelation (I was selling Bibles for Scripture Union at the time and simply looking for the reference number of a particular binding inside the back cover!):

Revelation Ch.22 begins “Then he showed me the river of the water of life, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.”.

Next time it rains, I’ll treasure God’s gift of water, feel it on my face and cup it in my hands, rejoicing as it refreshes and revives the earth.

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