In spring, we planted almost 5,000 seeds of rose moss in the garden, but what a pity it is to say that about 15 rose mosses germinated. Our expectations and waiting seemed to come to naught, but at least 15 rose mosses survived.
In this way, the growth and the multiplication of living plants are controlled and trimmed by an unknown mysterious power.
When I transplanted some big blue lily turf, I placed manure ahead and planted them in the backyard. Then, after listening to Sr. Teresa’s suggestion, I pruned all the old leaves because lily turfs were mixed with the yellowish leaves.
After several weeks, new sprouts came out. They were so fresh and lively that they looked like they were praising the wonders of God. Surely, pruning is necessary for better growth. When certain branches, leaves, buds or roots of a plant are removed, it improves their quality and increases flowers and fruits.
Cutting the lawn, clearing away the withered leaves, getting rid of unhealthy parts demand much attention and constant effort. Cutting off the diseased, damaged, unproductive or unwanted parts of a plant doesn’t take much trouble, but the decision to remove fresh sprouts demands us to be thoughtful and considerate.
For a stronger and bigger outcome, trimming, reducing or removing not only withered parts but also new sprouts is demanded. Especially removing unnecessary or superfluous parts lets the life energy concentrate on the essential part.
The pruning of a plant is similar to controlling our life schedules and keeping a balance. There are lots of things to do, and various options and chances are given in daily life. Sometimes, I wish I could handle all the possibilities, but my time, energy, and talent are limited.
I have to discern and choose the most necessary and urgent thing among many options. How to control desire wisely and how to manage time efficiently are the things that lead to a balanced and satisfied life.
Pruning needs thoughtful and enduring self-discipline. I do my best to make the most of my time, but I am still not a master of pruning.. Living the consecrated religious life, I still have various dreams to realize and much desire to discern and control properly.
In 1984, 103 martyrs were sanctified by Pope John Paul II, while 124 martyrs were beatified in 2014 by Pope Francis in Korea. I think those martyrs are masters of pruning especially at the moment of dying, for they willingly and bravely chose eternal life rather than betrayal and apostasy.
Their spirituality of humility is as expressed in the “litany of humility,” attributed to Rafael Merry del Val (1865-1930), a British-born Spanish Cardinal:
“O, Jesus, meek and humble of heart, hear me.. Deliver me from the desire of being esteemed, from the desire of being loved, from the desire of being extolled, from the desire of being honored, from the desire of being praised, from the desire of being preferred to others, from the desire of being consulted, from the desire of being approved, from the fear of being humiliated, from the fear of being despised, from the fear of suffering rebukes, from the fear of being calumniated, from the fear of being forgotten, from the fear of being ridiculed, from the fear of being wronged, from the fear of being suspected...”
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