A few years ago, we created a compost bin in our back yard just off the edge of our deck. Convenience was our main goal–a short walk from the kitchen to the deck to drop materials into the bin. That worked for a while until we realized that we were attracting critters from the woods too close to our house and family pets, so we stopped composting in that spot.
Two summers ago a tree of unknown original began growing in that now very rich spot, and by the end of last summer made me think: gee, I need to dig that up before we have an unwanted tree growing in the backyard. That was what I thought, but I didn’t act on it. Just yesterday, I walked out back and this is what I found.
This tree is blooming and the blooms are beautiful. I have not identified the type of tree it is, but I suspect it has grown from some fruit pits that went into our compost. What has become clear are two things.
First, we are capable of sowing without knowing. Second, to quote an old adage, haste makes waste.
Without realizing it, we sowed the seed of this tree, and without really taking time to find out about what it is, I had thoughts to be rid of it. What a waste of beauty that would have been, I now see. What a wonderful gift that came out of kitchen composting!
Where are our lives like this now? Where, out of daily responsibilities and routines, are we sowing seeds of promise, beauty, compassion, security, hope and strength for ourselves and others that we simply aren’t aware of? We aren’t aware of them so how can we know–but do take a look around your life. What good practices are you engaged in? Is it possible that they are creating goods larger than you know? The other lesson here, for me, is more sobering: when I plan on destroying something that is living, it is worth my time to try and understand what I am doing and why. Sometimes hard and difficult decisions have to be made, but often, failing to ponder is what creates the waste.