On Monday afternoon, we went to a community garden. I know that probably sounds like a strange thing to do on a family mission trip, but gardens are a huge deal here! This particular garden is called Cultiva Fields and houses two greenhouses, several acres of land where they grew a variety of produce, as well private plots for people to plant their own produce and flowers.
The staff toured us around the gardens showing us each of the fruits, vegetables and flowers that they cultivate throughout the year. Cultiva Feilds also works in conjunction with local high schools to develop a internship program for students during the summer. They also have larger groups like ours who come in periodically to lend a hand.
Throughout our afternoon of serving, we removed elm bushes where fruit trees will later be planted, we also helped harvest garlic and worked in the children’s peace garden. Though it may sound like a pretty normal outlet of recreation and hobby, there is also a lot of false religion that is practiced throughout these gardens. Matt Patrick, pastor at The Well, said many folks who plant in these gardens often chant over the plants in order to ask the false gods to bear fruit. The Well is seeking to build in roads into this community garden in order to be able to share the Gospel with those who work here, as well as others who use the garden for personal planting.
As I toiled for several hours, I was reminded of Jesus’ words in John 15:5, “I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit for apart from me you can do nothing.” Whether we were cutting down bushes in order to plant trees that will bear fruit, or sorting garlic into piles of good and bad batches, the idea was to distinguish the good fruit from the bad fruit. We, as believers, must be continually bearing fruit in our lives. It is through this fruit bearing that the world will know that we are Christ followers.
I pray that seeds of the Gospel were sown by our team, that will bear lasting fruit throughout the city of Boulder. “Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose trust is the LORD. He is like a tree planted by water that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.” – Jeremiah 17:7-8. May we be rooted in Christ, the living water, that we might never cease to bear eternal fruit.
Pray, too, for Connor who is on staff at Cultiva Fields. He and I had a good dialogue about where he is spiritually. He is trying to find the sacred in the midst of everyday life, he says. Pray that he might come to find the One through whom he can find abundant and eternal life through.
Written by Ryan Martin