As a couple, they’ve climbed all 53 peaks above 14,000 feet which are known as the “Fourteeners.” Jan’s spice cookies are famous and she’s written a lovely book called, “The Magnificent Mountain Women: Adventures in the Colorado Rockies.” Now in their 80’s, Jan and Dave Robertson continue to inspire by hiking and skiing in their Rocky Mountain backyard. We first met them when they traveled to Kodiak, Alaska and stayed in our B&B. The next year, Marty and I drove our motorhome from Arizona to Colorado to experience their world. Their home is located in the historic district of Boulder, a charming neighborhood with–how should I say–interesting codes. (To park the RV across the street from their house, for example, required special permission, for which Dave savored with delight).
After breakfast one morning, I took my coffee into their library. After browsing a little while I spotted a small book called, Meditations on Garden Themes, by Josephine Robertson. The pink jacket was tattered in the corners, a sign of good content, I feel. Inside, the pages were a pale, pea green. I turned the book over in my palm and read:
“Here Mrs. Robertson has used her garden experiences and those of others to express universal truths about everyday living. ‘I have collected this book,’ she says, ‘with the hope that from the bright blossoms of these gardens might be distilled some essence of faith and refreshment for the spirit.’
I heard soft steps behind me and turned to see Dave smiling with twinkling eyes. “My Mom wrote that,” he said. “And several other books.”
I sat down in a comfy chair, opened the book to started to read. Each of the 51 short devotions began with a scripture reading, followed by a brief meditation and a prayer. “Wow, no one writes like this any more,” I thought. It was beautiful, crisp, heartfelt writing. No fluff. Just grabs you. Let me share the first devotion with you…
DIGGING UP SEEDS
By Josephine Robertson
A time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted.—Eccl. 3:2
He wanted a little garden of his own, where he could plant vegetables like his father’s and flowers like his mother’s. What excitement that bright May morning when he took his small shovel and dug holes in the patch which had been marked out for him! He poked each seed down in the damp earth as if he were hiding a treasure, smoothed the dirt over it, splashed it generously with water, watched it wistfully a moment, then ran off to play.
A few days later his mother came out and saw him digging up the soil.
“What are you doing?” she asked, as mothers will.
“Just looking to see if the seeds are ever going to grow,” he said, looking at her with round, disappointed eyes. “And they’re not growing at all!”
How often it happens, and how difficult it is for a child to realize that the seed must rest in the damp darkness until it is ready and that he cannot hurry up the appearance of that first green leaf.
Children are not the only ones who are too impatient for results. A young graduate wonders if he will ever get the job he wants; a writer who has had a few rejection slips despairs of being published; a mother wonders if her sons will ever stop quarreling; a newcomer in town wonders if she will ever have any friends; a troubled soul doubts that an earnest prayer has been heard.
The writer of Ecclesiastes tells us that there is a time to plant and a time to pluck up that which is planted. In between, any gardener knows, is the time for patience and faith.
NOTE: I’m sure there are thousands of inspirational books out there, I really hope you’ll locate one of Josephine’s books to add to your private library. I was able to find copies of Josephine’s books on Amazon, AbeBooks and Powell’s Books in Portland, Oregon).