This past weekend Emma and I built a garden bed out of the rocks strewn about along the rock wall alongside our house. We had some left over bags of soil to use for a small garden bed but rather than go out and by some wood or cinder blocks we opted for the rather inexpensive route of rocks. In fact, it probably goes without saying that they were free. So after scavenging for some good wall building rocks, throwing in two bags of dirt, and planting some strawberry plants we have a nice little garden in the corner of our backyard.
As we were looking for rocks and stacking them I was reminded of all of those scenes in Genesis when Noah or Abraham or Jacob build an altar to the Lord by stacking stones or rocks. An even more powerful passage that came to mind is the one from Exodus 20:25 that says, “If you make an altar of stone for Me, you shall not build it of cut stones, for if you wield your tool on it, you will profane it.”
In the world in which we live distortions, disconnections, perversions abound in our relationships with one another, ourselves and the world around us. Yet in the world in which we live connection, harmony, and health abound despite such things. While the scorching sun can bring drought so can it also bring growth and health. There are moments that call us back to who we are, that call us back to connection and to clarity. Some would say that this is the Holy Spirit reaching out to us. There’s a continual call to repentance, to have a change of mind and of heart, away from ourselves and away from what the world would tell us is important.
Building with rocks this past weekend served as such a reminder.
Rocks dug up from the ground many years ago, stacked as a wall to serve as a property line of sorts. Now some of them strewn about taken by Emma and I to build a small garden. Free and from the earth, not created out of our hands and by the latest technology. Rather created by God and now stacked by us, made to fit by us without tools. We simply worked with what God created. And I was reminded of how truly good it is.