Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Garden (09/07/06)
TITLE: Not the first garden
By Abiodun Akinkoye
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The garden was almost comparable to the Garden of Eden in beauty, bounty and splendor. Evelyn looked around the sprawling mansion and gave thanks to God while having a feeling of fulfillment for what God has used her to accomplish, complementing the efforts of her husband in putting up the beautiful mansion. She had started early to nurture the garden so that on completion of the house, the garden would have blossomed and be ready. The word of God flashed in her mind “unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it”. “God is good”, she said, “It is the Lord’s doing and is marvelous in our eyes”.
To the front of the house she beheld the row of colorful flowers and there was no color of the rainbow that was not represented in different shades. Abby, the gardener was in overalls doing a good job tending the garden. The word of God flashed in her mind in that instant “even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these” and she said within her “God is the greatest artist and designer. Take all the glory Lord”!
Not long after, Damian, Evelyn’s husband drove in the latest Cadillac through the right wing of the Appian drive way and from the distance Evelyn felt proud of the achievement of his hardworking husband as he came in through the avenue of beautifully laid out Palms and hedges. She looked to the eastern part of the building and beheld her own convertible coupe in the garage. Suddenly before she made the mistake of vainglory, she thought “Nobody can receive anything except it is given to him from above”; every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning” and she said “Thank you Father, it is not by power, or might but your spirit oh Lord”.
Evelyn looked beyond his husband to the two iron gates, the high wall fences and saw the sentries and guards at their duty posts and felt a sense of security and safety of the mansion. The word of God rang in her mind’s ear “unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman stays awake in vain”. She whispered immediately “God watch over us. Even as your word says “..He who watches over you will not slumber… He will watch over your life…”
The lady of the house hugged her husband as he disembarked from the car underneath the beautifully crafted portico and drive-in while the children watched nearby saying “welcome daddy”. Mommy said, “I love you” to which daddy, replied “me too”. Rather than go inside as the butler opened the main door, Evelyn led Damian behind the main building to the rear garden overlaid with beautiful and luscious fruits and vegetables of all kinds. There was an artificial fountain where water flowed from the mouth of three small cherub statues and the sound of the flowing water was very smoothening to the nerves and spirit. Some of the servants were already plucking fruits and vegetable from the garden for dinner.
The romantic scenery brought several thoughts to Evelyn and of course her husband. Both of them remembered the Garden of Eden and the word of God flashed simultaneously into their minds “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall die”. Evelyn and Damian looked at each other straight in the eyes for it was if they could read each other’s mind. Both of them began to pray/ “Lord we thank you for this beautiful garden with all kinds of provision that you have given us, grant us grace to obey so that we are not cast out of the garden. Deliver us from deceit, lust and pride. In Jesus name we pray. Amen/”. We may no longer see the longer see the serpent physically, but it is still at work in the garden.
Gen.2: 8; Ps. 127:1; Matt.6: 29; James 1:17; Jn.3: 27; Gen.2: 16-17; Zec.4: 6 (NKJV) Ps.121 (NIV)
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