My Mother’s favorite song was “In The Garden”. She especially loved it when a woman in our Tulsa church sang it. Mrs. Eubanks was gifted with a voice that mesmerized you. I remember seeing my Mom close her eyes, with her head facing Heaven, as a peace enfolded her. The words from the first verse ring in my heart often, and when I hear the words in my mind, it is sung by Mrs. Eubanks.
I come to the garden alone, While the dew is still on the roses;
And the voice I hear, falling on my ear, The Son of God discloses.
And He walks with me, and He talks with me, and He tells me I am His own:
And the joy we share as we tarry there, None other has ever known.
I love the imagery of being in a serene garden, surrounded by the beauty and color of plants and flowers. I see myself on a comfortable bench as time stands still. The quiet is much quieter; the stillness more still; the beauty unimaginable. My Savior and me, alone, with no distractions.
Sometimes we talk and He assures me of things so deep in my heart that words cannot express what I am feeling. Sometimes we don’t talk. We just sit next to one another in comfortable silence.
Once, over 30 years ago, during a time of deep seeking, I actually sat in His lap as His arms held me tightly to His chest. It was the first time the intimacy with my Lord was so intensely intimate. There are times when life is hard and I’m reminded of the physical feeling I had that day. Time stood still, as I sat in my Father’s lap and received His love.
Whenever I go to the Garden of my Savior, the experience is personal. The things that draw me to His Garden may differ; and the scenery of His Garden may vary; but the experience of His Presence is always timely. Each meeting is a gift, designed especially for me.
Another thing I’ve experienced while in His Garden is the fragrance of the Holy Spirit. The first time was in the middle of the night when awakened to pray for a friend that was seriously ill. After praying for a time, I smelled the most incredible scent; as if someone sprayed a magnificent perfume that took my breath away. I was alone in the room, my husband and our dog sound asleep. The aroma was so overwhelming I actually looked to see if my husband had awakened or if someone had come in the house. For a minute I thought I was dreaming, and then I knew it was a gift from God as the fragrance of His Spirit manifested Itself to me.
My garden visits with the Lord will be different than yours. Because He knows each of us so intimately, He meets us exactly where we are and with what we need at the time. He and I seem to spend more of our “Garden Time” in the middle of the night, I think because that is when He will have my full attention.
One very special “Garden Time” I shared with my sisters, Karla and Susan. On October 16, 1992, we were able to be with our Mom when she left this world to go meet her Savior face to face. As she transitioned in to eternity, my sisters and I sang the words she loved so much, “And He walks with me, and He talks with me, and He tells me I am His own; and the joy we share as we tarry there, none other has ever known”.
Father, thank you for allowing us times of intimacy and joy in your presence, even as we experience heartbreak. I long for the time when being in the Garden of Your Presence isn’t something we occasionally experience, but one that we do for all eternity. I love you, Almighty God my Lord and Savior. Amen.