BIMI

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each rainy season. This is why the Indians cut new gardens every year or so. There are also a lot of insects to combat. The Indians grow tubers mainly and the best sweetest pineapples and lots of different types of bananas. The main food is cassava made from yucca, so the majority of their gardens are given to the yucca plant. I wanted to raise tomatoes, green onions, and peppers. I thought those three things would “spice” up our plain meals. As I waited for my seed order to get to the States and then back, I tried to prepare compost. One morning, I found an Indian friend diligently “cleaning” up my compost area for me. Finally, the seeds arrived! That evening I sat at the table and sorted them out into nice little piles, imagining all the good food we would have. I left the room for just a moment, only to return and find several Indian children enjoying the “snack” they thought I had prepared for them! I often would make popcorn and place it on the table for the visitors to eat and the Indians would eat dried pumpkin seeds as a snack, so they assumed I had left it for them! A few months later, I received my second order of seeds. I was much wiser now and guarded the seeds as if they were gold. I even managed to get tomato seedlings started. What joy! I would set them out each day for the required sunlight. The village was experimenting with raising sheep. They kept the sheep across the river—usually. No one told me, but they decided to bring the sheep over to the village side because a jaguar was killing them. The sheep assumed I had prepared a “snack” for them. They really seemed to enjoy my young tomato plants! A few months went by until I received more seeds, set the tomatoes, carefully guarded them from all two-legged and four-legged creatures. I had my husband clear a spot and build a small, low fence to keep out the sheep. I set out the young plants. I was very excited! We had to leave the village for a few days and I asked a neighbor boy to water the garden since it was now dry season. He was excited to do it as I promised to bring him a treat from town for his work. He watered the garden faithfully. The men of the village decided to burn off some jungle area. They burn off the areas around the village during dry season to keep snakes and critters away. Guess the area they burned? Yep! Bye, bye garden! When I returned, the poor little neighbor boy was still trying to water the burned garden! After a year trying to get a garden, I decided it was not going to happen after all! My garden never produced any vegetables, but I did cultivate something else: for me—patience (Hope deferred maketh the heart sick!) and a good attitude when things do not go as I hope and plan! (Put away anger and strife.); for the church and the ministry—people who learned about the Lord and His salvation, people who follow Christ long after the missionary is gone. So I guess it was a success after all! Rita never got her garden, but by listening to and following the Holy Spirit’s leading, she had a wonderful ministry among the people of the village. Believers who follow God’s plan as He reveals it to them will see God’s work done, maybe not how they planned, but then—does that really matter? We are just servants after all and we do not have to understand why. So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do (Luke 17:10). W 11