Our Gardens

Writers, ever since the time when the book of Genesis was penned, have used gardens in simile and metaphor, and have loved to draw many lessons therefrom. The preparation of the soil, the sowing of the seed, the tending of the early and the later growth, and finally the gathering of the products, have all been written of, until one might almost think the subject had been considered from every possible standpoint. While all this may make the subject appear more or less trite, there are some things from which valuable lessons can never cease to be drawn, and surely the idea of a garden is one of these.

If we think of each one's consciousness as a mental garden, what an amazing variety of vision begins to unfold! In what different states of development the gardens appear, and how manifold their apparent purposes! Some seem made to present only a pleasing impression, with all the best looking plants in the front rows. Others, one must search through long and earnestly to discover the rare beauties hidden away from view. Then there are those which appear to grow only useful things, and yet others which combine the useful and the picturesque. There are prim gardens, where everything seems orderly in the extreme, and careless ones all overgrown with weeds.

All this is a more or less just estimate of what the ordinary mental gardens of humanity present to the beholder. But there is a more serious viewpoint from which they should be considered. When we stop to realize that in them is planted all that makes for success or failure, for happiness or distress, for health or sickness, for good or evil, it may be readily seen that the greatest attention must be paid to their preparation and to their cultivation. All want their gardens to be pleasing; all would like them to be profitable and beneficent. Christian Science teaches, however, that the mental garden which is to bring forth the thirtyfold, or the sixtyfold, or the hundredfold of good to which our Master alluded, must be the one whose soil has not only been prepared by God, but it must have sown in it only the seed of Truth, and constant watchfulness must be exercised that nothing of an opposite nature shall be left to develop and blossom into things undesirable.

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Among the Churches
December 9, 1922

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