Jun 26, 2012

The Perfect Gardener


I recently was at a friend's house and had the privilege of picking small apples off her apple tree. It was her first "crop" and while the apples were small, I was excited to pluck them  off, one by one, and put them in my very old European potato harvest basket. (I am sure apples will work just as well in it as potatoes.)

The apples aren't quite sweet enough on their own (some are, but only a few), so I will most likely cut them up and either sugar them and freeze them or maybe make several apple pies. I will let you know.

But having spent some time last week with my two friends, Anne and Debra, and having a day with my camera at the classic car show, I was inspired by my time spent with Anne and I shooting together and just wasn't ready to put my camera away. When I got home after my apple picking, I put them on my table, as it was late in the day with just a little sun left. I got out my camera and played with all sorts of settings on my camera and thought I would share with you my images. No tripod, just faded light, and playing with around with some camera settings. 

Nothing says summer than a really fresh apple. As I set up the apples on the table and admired the natural light on them, as the sun was leaving the sky for the day... I was lost in my thoughts, as I turned an apple this way and then that way in the light...

I realized after a bit, I was absent-mindlingly looking for the "unique" apples. Something a little quirky. Digging in my wire basket, happily, I found a "runt" stuck in the between two grown apples. I hadn't noticed it when I plucked out of the tree.

I looked up the word "runt" on the computer dictionary and it basically says, in addition to the smallest animal in a litter, it is also: "A derogatory term, weak person."

I didn't think that term fitted this beautiful little apple, nor many circumstances in which we may refer to as a "runt." 

At times in my life, I have felt like the "runt." Weak. Not important. Maybe "plucked" too soon to really do any good. I think most have felt this way at one time or another.

But as I turn each apple into the light and "pose" it for the photo, I realize something...

I personally hand-picked these myself. So how could any of these little apples be but anything but perfect? No runts in this batch, if I had any say about it. 

And if little ole me can do a good job and hand-pick perfect apples, then just think what a perfect job our creator, Christ, did when he hand-picked you (us). 

Then it stands to reason that if a perfect Christ does a perfect job in handpicking us...then that can only mean one thing...

...we are perfect just the way we are. 

And in His eyes we are because we belong to Him, and that is good enough for Him.

May you always know you are important and loved. May you know that you were hand-selected because you are one-of-a-kind and never let anyone make you feel any different. 

If you doubt me, let me ask you this...have you ever seen a flower garden in full bloom? Are there two flowers exactly alike in that beautiful garden? And as you walk by to admire that beautiful flower garden, are you more likely bend down and pluck a flower and enjoy the wonderful fragrance? Or would you ignore the beauty and just point at a flower and criticize its petals?


And God is the perfect gardener...

I hope you enjoyed the images as much as I enjoyed taking them. 

From my house to your house,



The Feathered Nest said...

Oh Elizabeth...your photographs are absolutely breathtaking!!! and your message? we are all so very precious in His sight ~ sometimes it's so easy to forget this fact....sending you hugs and love, Dawn

Laura @ 52 FLEA said...

A perfect post...thoughtful words and spectacular photography. Thanks so much for sharing this today. :) Laura

Anonymous said...

Lovely indeed. Don't we all need that reminder from time to time? God can use something as simple as an apple to remind us just how special we are.


Donna Reyne' said...

Your are such a blessing my friend!
I am in love with the composition and color palette of these pictures!
God has given you such an amazing gift! Not only do you inspire with your photos but He has also given you the ability to put the right words with each~your message speaks to all of the senses.
Thank you for hearing His voice and sharing it as only you can!
Hugs from here

ChiPPy-SHaBBy said...

BeSt Old ViNtaGe W*I*R*E Basket!!! Just PeRfeCT for the Green Apples... Gorgeous Pics...
Jeanine Burkhardt

www.MaisonStGermain.com said...

Beautiful post today Elizabeth:) Thank you!
~Debra xxx
Capers of the vintage vixens

Claudia said...

Beautiful photos, Elizabeth. For what it's worth, I'm always drawn to the runt of the litter!


Tina said...

Truly exceptional images Elizabeth! Love your message as well! I'm studying Nehemiah this summer, the message of 'what has God placed within your heart to DO'.... resonates with your apples large and small. Stay cool!

Anne Lorys said...

Oh, beautiful one...
I wish your inspiration to take out the camera and play would rub off one me.
Do you know that I haven't even uploaded the photos from the trip yet? How horrid is that?!? I'm stuck in some sort of paralytic lethargy.

I'm blaming you.
I miss YOU.


Sorry about this afternoon, my phone lost service for HOURS. Will try again tomorrow!

Debra@CommonGround said...

The lighting and mood of these photographs is like a still life painting...just beautiful. And you always weave a story, thought, or message within. But I have to say I was waiting for the punch line that those two apples were you and Anne and that I was the "runt" in the middle. LOL!!! couldn't help myself! I'll "hang out" on the tree with you anytime! xoxo

Carol Spinski said...

As always, GORGEOUS photos and BEAUTIFUL message just like you My Friend:)


house things said...

Stunning images! And, Thank You from the bootom of my heart for this uplifting post!

maggiegracecreates said...

Good Morning Elizabeth, I have been a fan of yours since the article in the Mary Englebreit magazine. Lovely words --- and I simply do not know how I missed the beautiful XOXOX hugs and kisses in the header photo until today.

Thank you for sharing your inspirations with us.

Anonymous said...

Oh my, your photos are beautiful. So are your thoughts. Some days I feel a bit more perfect than others. There are times we all feel like the runt. Maybe it keeps us a bit humble? OK, your photography skill looks perfect to me!!


Jillayne said...

This one is dear to my heart Elizabeth.
I have always liked the word "runt" and have always used it as a term of affection. We have a little cat we rescued years ago - he was abandoned during -40 weather and so lost his ears and the end of his tail. The ordeal also stunted his growth so his legs are a bit short (he was a kitten), and he has always been my little runt. Terms of endearment, and they taught me most words can be good words if the intention is good...
I love how you write, and even more, how you think.

Sandi~A Cottage Muse said...

Looking at these beautiful photos is the best way to start my day! And your thoughts have made me smile as well!

I am loving your new header!!

KC said...


Your photography in this post is absolutely stunning! I'm not sure if sell your photography but you should! These pics are amazing.

Thank you!

Laraine Lord said...

Beautiful photos. I love the low lighting - they remind me of the old masters paintings which are some of my favourites. Plus a very special message.

Fancy said...

I want an apple tree! They are so pretty...

summersundays-jw said...

Beautiful.....words & photos! How I'd love to have several of those photos across my dining room wall. Jan

MJ said...

Elizabeth your words always make me day. I have been missing them lately but today was the day!

You capture the beauty in the simplest of things and tell a story to go with that gives is such meaning.

Love you...Miss you... Hope you have an amazing weekend!

P.S You, Anne & Debra...now that's a dream team. Such talented women. xoxo to you all.

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