Hi, I’m David Gifford.
It means so much to me to be able to preach; it’s the best side gig, ever. In my regular job, I get to be outside everyday (except when the ground’s frozen), designing, installing and maintaining landscapes. I love the outdoors, both for work and for play (year ’round), and I love tending all kinds of growing things, so a degree in horticulture was a natural fit for me.
Over the years, though, the more my business grew, the more I felt a vague restlessness. My interest in preaching and discipleship increased. When that feeling just kept getting stronger, I couldn’t ignore it and went off to seminary to see how I would fare.
I loved it! I completed an M.Div. and am looking forward to becoming ordained.
Through the process, it’s dawned on me that ministry is not so far removed from landscaping. In many ways, nurturing the Christian life is much the same as cultivating a garden….
We must first till up, amend and prepare the ground (confess, receive forgiveness and repent), plant ourselves in the richest, most fertile soil (abide in Christ alone), weed carefully, water lovingly and ensure the proper amount of sunlight (be sifted by the Holy Spirit, steeped in God’s Word and stay fervent in prayer) – in order to thrive and blossom (bear the fruits of the Holy Spirit through sanctification) and sow seeds for a flourishing garden (witnessing to God’s wondrous works in our lives in order to proclaim hope everlasting to those around us).