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Gems for the Journey, Issue #007 -- Growing Hope
July 02, 2012

Gems for the Journey

Growing Hope

Spring and summer are always a good time to think of growth and new life. Last winter was a difficult one for me. Perhaps I needed some fallow time to just “be,” but the days felt dark and dreary. It was hard to feel motivated to try anything new and I didn’t feel very hopeful about life.

This spring I felt the need to plant something—to do something physical that promoted new life and hope. But at the same time I didn’t want to overwhelm myself with a new, huge garden.

So I searched the web to get ideas for easy vegetable gardens. I found Food 4 Wealth. The name is meant to reflect the money you save by not having to buy vegetables. This is great, but I was really attracted to the ease of the system in getting started and maintaining the garden.

So I began my gardening adventure…

Have you ever thought about the stuff seeds like to grow in?

Dirt, manure, straw, hay, with some organic bone and blood fertilizer added for extra nutrient value to the plants.

  • What situations in your life feel worthless, horrible or disgusting?
  • What would it take for you to see these areas as places where seeds could grow?

What would you plant?

It can be fun to think about what you want to grow. There is the dream of plump, red tomatoes and crisp lettuces from the garden to the table in less than 15 minutes!

  • If you took a moment to dream, what would you grow?
  • What areas of your life could use some new dreams?

How do you get through the waiting?

There is a lot of waiting in darkness involved in new growth. The dream is great, but it’s so easy to lose hope when life is dark.

  • What do you do to get through the waiting in life?
  • Where do you find hope for the dark days?

Where is the new growth? Did you notice it?

I got so used to looking at the black dirt in my garden that I quit looking at it. Then one day I was astounded to find there were actually seedlings popping through!

  • Have you ever gotten so used to seeing the darkness in life, that you missed the new growth?
  • What new life is present in you that you might want to celebrate more?

Wouldn’t you love to enjoy this feast?

For the past few weeks, I’ve had an abundance of salad vegetables. Recently I picked my first green beans and cucumbers. I can hardly wait for the squashes that are still ripening.

  • What are the fruits you are receiving as a result doing the emotional work that life is requiring of you these days?
  • How are these fruits feeding you and nourishing even more growth in your life?

Growing hope in the garden of your soul may not be as easy as growing a small vegetable garden in your backyard. But sometimes these activities can be doorways through which we find new life in unexpected ways.

Memorial Gardens

My aunt found hope in creating a different kind of garden to deal with her grief after my cousin died. Read her story and ideas for creating memorial gardens.


What positive physical action might you take to help you create a more hopeful outlook in life?

  • Food 4 Wealth can also be used to create a fall garden—I’m looking forward to planting cabbage, cauliflower, and broccoli in another month or so.
  • Memorial gardens can be done at anytime.
  • If gardening is not your thing, check out all the other positive, creative activities mentioned on the site You just might be surprised at how much hope you can grow in your own life.

New to the Site

Feel free to contact me if you think of anything that would be a helpful addition to the site. Also feel free to pass this newsletter on to anyone you might know who would find it helpful.

May you find beauty today for your journey,


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