June 14, 2017

The Prayer Garden

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. ~ James 4:8
My large back yard flower bed that I refer to as my garden is sanctuary to my quiet heart. The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden overwhelms me with its beauty whichever season I visit. The wildflowers at our nearby Breckenridge Park delight me every spring.

And now The Prayer Garden is etched in my heart for the few moments I could spend there on the one sunny afternoon among the multiple days it rained while I attended the writers conference in North Carolina a few weeks ago. 

No one else was there and I could not believe how fortunate I was to have this place to myself. Mine is a heart that thrives on moments like this. I could sit on one of the inviting benches or walk among the flowers and trees and across the covered bridge, whispering freely every thought out loud to God because it was just us. Warmed by the spring sun in the middle of this Prayer Garden in the Blue Ridge Mountains, it was just us. 

As I felt His closeness, I was reminded of the verses that tell us He is not a God that is far off. He is a God that desires to have a close relationship with His beloved children. He wants to walk with us whether it is during a busy day at the office or while we are tending to our homes and family, or quietly in a garden. It can truly be said of Him that He is always near.

“Am I a God near at hand,” says the Lord,
“And not a God afar off?
Can anyone hide himself in secret places,
So I shall not see him?” says the Lord;
“Do I not fill heaven and earth?” says the Lord.
Jeremiah 23:23-24

The Prayer Garden is located on the property of the LifeWay Ridgecrest Conference Center near Asheville, NC.