Grounding and Nourishing

Always it’s the ground that draws my heart to reflect on growing. The sky calls to my dreams, but it’s the soil that brings me back to the parables that Jesus spoke, to the sheep and their grazing, to the rains falling on the dry ground.


One of my newer yet old forms of creating has been to work with art collages. On days when my hands have moments of strength, then I can gently cut and freely glue without the pressure of precision that my old crafts required. On the day I created this page, the words were what struck me, and the Scriptures were the connection to the invitation that I felt from Jesus:




“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters,” Psalm 23:1-2 NIV


However, it was the small image of a succulent in the corner that drew the eye of one of my friends–so much so that she sent me a few interesting facts about them. When another friend gifted me a succulent mini-planter, I suddenly felt my Shepherd drawing my own attention to those facts about succulents.


In this season when my gardening has been limited to the indoors, or to small containers on the deck, I’ve ached to feel that soil under my fingernails, that ground beneath my feet. I have always felt that when I’ve been digging on my knees I have understood those facts as parables, and those mysteries as treasures from His earth.


“Succulents are plants that thrive in the dry desert landscape. Poor, gritty soil allows the desert rains that come like a sudden and sporadic flood to drain thoroughly. And then, During the ‘drought,’ they’ll put out new roots that are thick and healthy, so they can absorb more water when the ‘flood’ comes again.”



But it was the meaning of the word itself that drew me deeper into the parable:


“Succulent comes from the Latin word ‘sucus,’ which means juice or sap. It’s also a nod to the nourishing leaves that help these plants survive in extremely warm conditions.”



Where had I heard those words before? My Shepherd called me to drink deep of His living water, to remember the verses that were spoken when our family first moved into this home 15 years ago.


“He made him ride on the high places of the earth, that he might eat the increase of the fields; and he made him to suck honey out of the rock, and oil out of the flinty rock;” Deuteronomy 32:13 NIV


As I dug my fingertips into the small container of dirt on the deck, the same earthy smell surrounded me. The mystery was at work even here in places that have felt so small to me.



The soil calls to me

Touch your fingers here

Feel the ground beneath your feet

Anchor your soul in the earth


Fresh brown dirt teeming with life

Moisture filling between the clods

Rains have fallen days on end

Life overwhelming smells of earth


But other days other seasons

Soil was dry and cracked

Burnished ground felt empty

Life was hidden in barren earth


Desert places burnt the ground

Fires raged where weeds consumed

The flames had sent the roots down low

Freed new growth in deeps of earth


Succulent leaves now thick and fat

Began to stretch out fleshy roots

Sucking life where none was seen

Yet tendrils knew to search the earth


And I have heard Shepherd’s call

Trust the season He sets before

He will guide my roots, my shoots

Find His growth in this HIS earth.






The moments of the dry season are just as crucial for growth as those moments of verdant rains. The stormy seasons have their place as well. Our Good Shepherd is always leading us along His pathway where growing is to be gained. He plans for those roots of ours to go down deep, to suck the honey from the rocky ground. It is HIS mystery that brings us life.


As the storms seem to rage around me now, even my husband is bearing the weight again. We are waiting on calls from yet more specialists as he injured his shoulder last night, with a probable tear in the tendons.


Does a fresh deluge mean that we will be swept away?

Or does that very deluge bring within its rain the nurturing of our Lord?


Would you pray with me today?

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You once again for the mysteries that You bring to us from the depth of Your creation. We are in awe that You would gift us glimpses into the Spiritual realm even as we observe this physical realm around us. Lift our eyes to trust You in these storms, Lord. Our hearts grow faint as we wait for the growth that You have promised us. We long to be held and nurtured by You in these places of grounding of our souls. We are filled with worship of You, our own Dear Master Gardener.

In Your name, we pray,





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25 thoughts on “Grounding and Nourishing

    1. Yes, you are so right, Ruth! His Holy Spirit is in us bringing the precious water of God, nourishing and strengthening us! Thank you for this precious insight. I’m sorry it took me so long to respond, somehow your comment ended up in my spam folder! I’m so glad I went to look there. Blessings to you!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Thank you, Bettie, once again for sharing the God-given insights from the tiny plants around you. I noticed that succulents grow thick roots during drought! “Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.”
    Colossians 2:7

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Lisa,
      Oh, thank you for sharing this Scripture that fits so well! I love the way that He speaks just the right word for us, that “fitly spoken Word in settings of silver,” that touches our hearts. And yes, may I let Him bring that growth down deep, being built up more and more in Him. I’m praying for you today also, Dear Sister. Blessings and love to you!


  2. Oh, I am SO sorry to hear of your husband’s injury and yet another heavy burden to be upon you, dear friend. Only the dear Lord knows how much you can take. I wonder if you truly realize the sweet fruit that is being borne from your heartaches? Your words are so encouraging to those of us who are also in trials and seeking Jesus with all our hearts. The crushing that you are experiencing is squeezing out such beautiful odors that are so well-pleasing to our dear Lord. Thank you for choosing to shine for Him from places of such darkness. I LOVED reading about succulents and gleaned so much spiritual good from this post. God bless you and hold you ever close to His heart.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Cheryl,
      Thank you so much for your precious comments of encouragement here. You bring such a touch of the Holy Spirit with you whenever you share your heart, and I am so touched by Jesus in you! I am so glad that you were blessed here, and that the Lord brought such good to your heart here too. You have brought tears to my eyes today, and I pray such blessings for you. Love and hugs Sweet Friend!


  3. Even in those small spaces, God works are bigger than we could ever imagine! He is limitless. I loved how you found the meaning of succulent and saw how God also promises to nourish us in all seasons! May He continue to nourish you and your husband during this season, Bettie.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Lynn,
      Yes, your statement here, “even in those small spaces, God’s works are bigger than we could ever imagine,” reminds me of your beautiful photos of landscapes, but also your photos of the small intricate wildflowers. Truly, God is so awesome in all of His works. Thank you so much for the insights you share, and for your dear prayers too.


  4. Dear Bettie, I love how you can take experiences from nature and demonstrate such powerful truths from God. All that He shows us in nature also reveal His love and care. There really should be no separation between the material and the spiritual – we need the material to demonstrate the spiritual to us, and you do that so beautifully! I love your poem! We much trust Him in every season, for He knows just what we need. Blessings, love and hugs to you my dear sister/poet/friend! xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Gayl,
      Thank you for the support and love you share. I am so glad that we can share together the beauty that He shows us in nature all around us. You are so right that “we need the material to demonstrate the spiritual in us.” He is so good to send us His gifts. May I let Him show me those gifts more and more every day. Blessings, love, and hugs to you dear sister/poet/friend! xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Good morning dear Bettie, just sat down to soak in your words. Your descriptions of His earth, where growth happens are so vivid. Thank you for these pictures framed now in my mind. May God keep drawing you deeper into those mysterious life-giving places. Love, Julie

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Julie,
      Yes, His life-giving places, are hidden in the deep so often. And yet, His mysteries are so freely poured into us through that soaking with Him and His Word. What a precious picture you have give also, of waiting with Him in the morning. Thank you for your prayers and encouragement Dear Sister. May you be blessed in Him today. Love to you too!


  6. I read a post on “grounding” and how we should go barefoot for at least an half hour each day to ground to the earth. It resonated with me because I love to go barefoot but have quit doing so due to not really good reasons. But as I walked through a grassy field in Northern Minnesota while on vacation I realized how good it felt to once again be connected closer to God’s earth. I know some believe the mother earth is a god but nothing that had to be created is a god, it takes a God, a real and loving God to create green green grass and blue skys and we human to enjoy it all. Lovely post.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, our Lord truly has gifted us with so much in the earth that we fail to recognize. He is such a loving Creator over all! I’m so glad that you had some time to still and reconnect with that beauty over your vacation. I love Northern Minnesota. We lived in the Twin Cities for over 10 years in the early part of our marriage. May we continue to look to the Lord to let Him bring His blessings in our days!


  7. Bettie……..this beautiful post with your poem of sweet truth and your artwork is so encouraging. I lifted you and your husband up in prayer this evening……..may God ease your burdens and pain in Jesus’ name, Amen.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Wendi,
      Thank you so very much for your sweet comments, and for your dear prayers. They truly mean so much! I am so grateful that God allows us to share His encouragement with each other. He is nourishing us even in the sharing. Blessings and prayers for you too.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Your words always nourish and cause me to dig deeper into my own life. The idea of digging into the dirt reminds me of how God prunes the plants and nourishes the soil so the roots grow strong and are able to sustain the plant. God is doing that for you and your husband. He is making new what is broken. I am praying for you and your husband as you continue to maneuver these challenges.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Mary,
      Thank you for your beautiful insights and encouragement. He truly is at work in the pruning above, and in the nourishing down deep. And I know that while it feels like so much brokenness here, He is bringing about His newness. I have heard that word also. I appreciate your prayers and sweet comments so much. Love and blessings to you.


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