The sky was a ripened peach splattered across the sky, and the blinking fireflies were out in full force trying to drink in the sweet sticky juices before the cloak of darkness enveloped everything. Sitting in my wicker chair there were all sorts of trucks and bubble guns and other toys underfoot. The yard looked as if the rapture had happened while a bunch kids were playing in the long grass. Beyond the clutter of colorful plastic objects our new garden was proudly growing weeds with a few vegetable plants scattered around. At least the tomatoes seemed to be doing fine. Next year we should grow nothing but tomatoes and learn how to can them.
There was just the faint hint of a breeze and the night air seemed undecided on whether or not to be warm or cool. I watched the flickering flame on my little citronella candle slowly dying as it descended into the green abyss of the scented wax. Its presence had no impact on the mosquitos buzzing about my arms and legs drinking thirstily, but still I sat and watched and listened. Quietly I stared out across the small property that has become my home. The toys and the garden are signs of life. Signs that this has become more than a house and a weed infested lawn. This little fixer-upper on Anne Avenue has become my home.
The word that keeps coming to mind is “roots”. My roots are sinking down into this once abandoned plot of land right alongside the tomatoes in the garden. There is a sense of rest that comes with having roots, a feeling of peace that I have not had since being a kid living under my parent’s roof in our blue house in Papua New Guinea.
The resilient tomato plants pushing up from the ground bear witness to a hidden reality; roots. This feeling of peace growing within me is the same. The external sign of a hidden reality; a soul long uprooted now putting down roots. A missionary kid finding his home.