I Thought I Was Growing Pumpkins…..

One year Jerry and I decided to grow pumpkins.  I really don’t know what possessed us to try it.  We’d been relatively successful at growing vegetables like tomatoes, carrots, or radishes.  And now we thought we were ready for more.  So, pumpkins it was.

(c) AdobeStock Photo

(c) AdobeStock Photo

We put in some starter plants.  They took right away.  The vines grew longer and longer, and then there was fruit.  Until there wasn’t.

The pumpkins were about half grown.  Nicely shaped.  Beautiful.  And then one day they weren’t growing.  They began to shrivel up.  We couldn’t figure out what was wrong.

And then I looked at the vine.  Something had eaten the vine right where it emerged from the ground.  All the way through.  It wasn’t connected any more.  The vine was so long that it still provided food for the fruit – for a little while.  Once the supply of nourishment from the ground had stopped, the plant couldn’t survive.

Our lives can be like that too.  We stop practicing gratitude, and eventually our joy dries up.  Not right away.  There’s some left-over energy from our former practice.  But eventually joy shrivels just like my pumpkins did.  From lack of food and water.  Care and feeding.

Want to live with joy?  Don’t let something eat away at the vine.  Stay connected to the source.  As you grow and flourish, your joy will nourish others too.

What practice do you want to adopt or continue to nurture joy? Join the conversation and share your insights.

If you want to hear more about practicing joy, listen to podcast episode 077.


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  • O, I absolutely needed to read this today! Thank you thank you :)

  • Yes intentional gratitude is so powerful. It is an important reminder that all we have is by grace and not an entitlement. I remember a friend’s comment to me when I asked him how he was doing. His response was, “Better than I deserve!” I love that kind of attitude of gratitude!

    • I do too, Sunil. I am trying to cultivate that attitude more often.