The Croaking of Frogs and God’s Mandate to Tend the Garden

Bull frogs greet me as I stroll past the pond on my way to the cabin.

Glub. Glub. They WILL be heard.

Song birds and fat buzzing bumblebees compete with the frogs.

I sit on the cabin porch at the edge of the pond and take it all in.

It is quiet, but oh, so noisy on this spring evening.

Each and every spring, I marvel at the gift of NEW.

As winter wanes and spring approaches, I never fail to be surprised by how God knows just when I have had all the brown and grey and white I can take, and He delivers a wide swath of green, punctuated with all the colors that have laid dormant through winter.

Never more than in springtime do I appreciate Scripture’s promise that God will restore heaven and earth. The perfect earth as He created it will be returned to perfection — our forever home for Eternity.


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A long-awaited piece of mail arrived today, giving voice to my appreciation for God’s creativity. The first issue of my subscription to the beautiful Plough Quarterly holds pages of stunning art and photographs, surrounded by literary reflections on this quarter’s topic: Earth. As I turn its smooth, thick pages, words of praise rise and images from an artist’s eye share truth.

The earth is a precious gift from God and we are its stewards. Click To Tweet

Many times, I have been cautious in my praise and frugal in voicing concern over how we care for this gift, fearful some might accuse me of loving the creation more than the Creator. But the perceptions of others matter little alongside what I know in my heart — God’s goodness is reflected in His creation. He is pleased by my “Hallelujahs” and He delights in bringing me joy while I sit on my humble porch, listening to birds sing and frogs croak.

photo (12)From the Spring 2015 issue of Plough Quarterly, these words by theologian and scholar N.T. Wright (excerpted from his book “Surprised by Scripture: Engaging Contemporary Issues”):

“In the new creation, the ancient human mandate to look after the garden is reaffirmed……The resurrection of Jesus is the reaffirmation of the goodness of creation, and the gift of the Spirit is there to make us the fully human beings we were supposed to be, precisely so that we can fulfill that mandate at last. What are we waiting for? Jesus is coming. Let’s go and plant those trees.”




  1. Tara

    Ingrid, love that NT Wright quote. Reminds me of something Martin Luther once said. He was asked what would you do if you knew today was your last day on earth? He replied “Plant a tree.” Spring reminds me of new life too. I think of the baby calves that are born this time of year. I think of the fields coming back to life as they are planted in etc.


      Thanks, Tara. I hadn’t heard that Martin Luther quote. I meet the Lord often in nature and you’re right, new life is the perfect reminder that God is a loving Creator.

  2. Cynthia Swenson

    I’m thankful for your post which reminds me that “the heavens declare the glory of God”. We are inside today and it’s raining but I really enjoyed the serene setting of your cabin & it’s loveliness. Thank you for sharing Ingrid! Love prayers, in Jesus Cynthia


      Thank you, Cynthia. I’m so glad my little bit of commentary helped brighten this spring day. I’m so glad you stopped by.

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