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Our well -watered orchard

I spent some time outside our community centre this morning, watering our trees and picking up the endless trash that this community just loves to drop wherever...the wherever being around my trees which between the heat and the trash are struggling to survive.

Dr Happy turned up, in his usual happy mood. " Binti Yakub" he chided me, " You are watering the trees at the wrong time of day" . " I know Doc Happy, but the watering can't wait, they are thirsty for water and I need to water them now. "

Little did I know, that while I was busy watering the cracked, dry soil outside our rainbow colored gates, Sheikh Khalid had taken the inside hosepipe and was busy sprinkling the kids with drops of refreshing water. It was a good day for watering. The perfect time for watering.

Sometimes you just have to water according to the need and not according to the laws of gardening. I suppose the correct word would be horticulture. I look around today at our Kids in War. They are our orchard. Some are still surrounded by garbage that seeks to choke them. So I clear the garbage even in the heat and focus on the water spirting out from the hose.

Some of our kids are kind of stumpy. We planted them, watered them but they withered and dried up. We had to show tough love and cut off some branches, branches of violence, branches of mockery, branches of bad speech...and slowly slowly healthy new leaves full of promise are growing. Water hose in one hand, pruning shears in the other.

"The only way that we can live is if we can grow. The only way that we can grow is if we change. The only way that we can change is if we learn. The only way that we can learn is if we are exposed. The only way that we can be exposed is if we throw ourselves out into the open. Do it. Throw yourself." C. Joybell C.

Some of our kids are like the plants that already stand tall and strong. Standing there exposed in the open. Some fight to push through the stones, the rubble and the garbage. We are there to water at what some will say is the wrong time of day, and to lovingly without them even noticing, push the garbage away.

So with the hope, and prayer that we will be good orchard keepers, good and wise gardeners, I leave you with this thought from the wonderful Fellowship of the Ring..." For you little gardener and lover of trees, I have only a small gift. Here is set G for Galadriel but it may stand for garden in your tongue. In this box there is earth from my orchard, and such blessing as Galadriel has still to bestow upon it. It will not keep you on your road nor defend you against any peril , but if you keep it, then perhaps it will reward you. Though you should find all barren and laid waste, there will be a few gardens in Middle - Earth that will bloom like your garden if you sprinkle this earth there."

Our kids. The Kids of War. Sprinkling earth, watering well and pruning. At times of the day when others call it foolishness.

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