Author: Nathan Kroon | Student Leader, Living Education – Charlotte, 2022-23
Estimated Reading Time: 5 min.
Mr. Rod McNair began this forum by reading from Genesis 2:15 and stating that “From the beginning, we were designed to tend and keep the earth.”
Our media today sees people as very liberal if they care for the environment, but tending it is important, and doing so helps connect us to God. Micah 4:4 paints a beautiful picture of the Millenium, in which everyone will sit under their own vine and fig tree. This certainly doesn’t mean that everyone will have to be a farmer during this time, but there will be a deep connection to the land.
Today, most people are growing further apart from creation as humanity is being swept up in technology. Modern advances and tools are tremendously convenient, but as we go along, we must not lose our connection with the ground we were made from (Genesis 3:19). As we lay a foundation for our lives, and as we think about how we’ll go forward, we should consider growing things around us!
What Can We Grow?
Not everyone has an affinity for the outdoors, but they can still connect to the natural world from indoors. Flowers can make for colorful additions to your home, both indoors and outdoors. They are also a reminder of all the color and detail that God put into creation. Men might think of them as “girly” plants, but even if they don’t enjoy flowers, they can grow them for the women in their lives (mothers, sisters, wives, etc.)! Vegetable plants and fruit trees can also be very useful. Most people like good food, and growing fruits and veggies can help you to eat better. Finally, plants and shrubs can make your home or balcony seem nicer and look more complete.
Why Should We Grow Something?
- To Connect to the Reality of God
Mr. McNair brought several plants that he and his wife had grown, and showed them to the students. He said that it was truly incredible that something as small as a seed can carry the genetic code necessary to grow into a much larger plant. It’s nothing short of a miracle, and it reminds us of a tremendous power in the world that God put in place.
- To Improve Our Own Health
Mr. McNair listed many health benefits that growing plants outdoors can offer:
- Exercise in the garden
- Anxiety and stress reduction
- Attention deficit recovery
- Decreased depression
- Enhanced memory retention
- Improved happiness and life satisfaction
- Mitigation of PTSD
- Increased creativity and productivity
- Reduced effects of dementia
- Enhanced self-esteem
- Clean indoor air
- Reduced indoor noise level
People are often fascinated with online farming games, but it’s much healthier to invest a little time into the real deal!
- To Save Money
Growing fruits and vegetables will help you to save good money on groceries. Mr. McNair recommended buying heirloom plants, which allow you to replant seeds found within the vegetable or fruit. A tomato from a store can cost 233 times more than it would to grow one from a seed packet.
Practical Things You Can Do
If you’ve never planted anything, you can be practical in doing so! Mr. McNair listed some ways:
- Grow what you like.
- Do things the easy way. Don’t make it needlessly complicated.
- Take advantage of where you live and its climate.
The earth’s seasons reflect God’s plan, and the Holy Days are anchored in them. God created both the seasons and the Holy Days because He has a wonderful plan for us. Currently, the time of the year is the season of firstfruits, and the blossoming of flowers and trees reminds us that God is calling people into the truth.
Mr. McNair stated that in our current age, most people of our nation are able to live better than most of the kings of the Bible. He then read from Ecclesiastes 5:9: “Moreover the profit of the land is for all; even the king is served from the field.” Even though we may live relatively like kings, there is still much profit to be found in growing things. We find a lot of unreality in our world. The natural world can help us to see reality again, so grow something—anything!
Nathan Kroon is a Student Leader at Living Education. He originally hails from Washington State, and is a 4th generation Christian. Currently, he works at Headquarters as a Video Editor, and is the Lead Landscaper at the LivingEd dorms. His hobbies include playing guitar, listening to music, drawing, and watching movies.