I thought I would post a few photos of our garden as a reminder of the power of Spring - amazing that just a few weeks ago this was under a foot of snow.
It's rather ironic, for garden-lovers such as me, to find that in the bible the story of God begins in a garden, but ends in a city. The love of the garden is probably related to the desire to return to Eden - the first days of creation before sin spoilt the world. For gardeners, there is an opportunity to create a little bit of Eden for themselves. So how do we respond to John's vision, in Revelation, of the holy city coming down from heaven, 'as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband'? Of course it's pictorial language and isn't to be like any city we know - at least I hope it's not like the 1970's Barbican development in London! But what is interesting is that there is a tree - 'the tree of life'. This must be the same tree that was planted in Eden - the one that Adam and Eve didn't get their hands on. An ancient tree that was in the beginning and has lasted to the end. The garden, as the dwelling place for God and man, has been replaced by a city, but the tree of life is still there.
I think that for me the attraction of the garden is as a refuge from the modern city, because though today's city is vibrant and bustling, it can also be cruel, unfriendly, ugly and life-draining. But the city of Revelation is one where God and people will dwell together in peace. It's beyond the imagination of city planners, but I'm glad it's in the imagination of God. I look forward to finding it one day.