The land yields its harvest; God, our God, blesses us.
Every Tuesday, from May through October, my hometown of Kennesaw, Georgia, sponsors a farmers' market in the parking lot of a city park. It's always worth braving the intense summer heat to get that truck-patch watermelon, those homegrown tomatoes, and the sweet, delectable peaches from which Georgia earns its nickname, "The Peach State".
As someone who grew up with a father who was an avid gardener, and who inspired me to be one, too, before my days of living in a forest, I truly appreciate the efforts these green-thumbed folks make each year to share their yield, their harvest, with the community. Working long, hot hours in the garden. Standing long, hot hours with the minimum of shade to sell their produce.
"You need some tomatoes?" a friendly vendor calls to me as I pass his booth.
"Truthfully," I say as I stop to chat with him, "we still have a few from last week's visit, so we are set for now. But, would you mind if I take a photo of yours here?"
"Go right ahead," he says. "These are not the best, but I done sold all my good-lookin' ones, and I'm about to pack it in. Lord, this heat! They'll be better ones next week when you stop by."
"I sure will," I assure him.
"Oh, and here," he says with an engaging grin as he hands me a perfect, though small, tomato. "Take this one. It's on me."
"Really? You are too kind. Thank you!"
I accept the tomato graciously and place it in my shopping bag. Below is the photo I take of it when I get home.
See? It's perfect, isn't it? And, wow! Did it ever taste amazing!
While most people come to the farmers' market for fresh fruits and vegetables, there are other delights offered there, too.
All these are alluring, but I'm here today with only two purposes in mind: photos and peaches. My husband, Danny, and I can't get enough of that delicious fruit. And, the season for them is not that long, so we must enjoy them while we can.
As I approach the tent where the peaches are sold, they aren't the first things to grab my attention . . .
The man with the guitar is performing "This Little Light of Mine", and the three young ladies (quite the Georgia Peaches in their own right) are singing and clapping right along. I can't help myself. I have to join in!
This joyful, spirited song about letting our lives shine with God's light brings back so many treasured memories of singing with my children. My heart soars! And, my thoughts fly to the man selling the tomatoes. How his light shone through the simple, generous gesture of giving me that tomato!
How bright is your little light? Will you let it shine, let it shine, let it shine?
Will you pray with me?
If we all practiced shining the light of Christ, Father, what a bright and beautiful world this would be! Let us shine Your glorious light with joy and love and grace toward others. Amen.