Kari Jobe -The Garden
The 36-year-old, Grammy-nominated artist has suffered from a fair share of life’s heartbreaks and challenges–including the death of her own niece. Never losing hope, her eyes remain fixed on the One who gives life. In the beautiful, profound lyrics of “The Garden” Kari reminds us of the great love and faithfulness of our Father.
“I had all but given up.”
At the beginning of “The Garden” acoustic music video, Jobe’s face is riddled with despair and pain. Through the song’s lyrics, she admits to being desperate for God’s love and peace. She felt separated from God by an uncrossable chasm. How could God have ignored her prayers for her niece? Why did God allow the life of an innocent little girl to be inexplicably cut short?
As Kari tells the song’s story, she focuses on her niece’s middle name–Ivy. Kari notes that ivy is such a resilient, billowing plant, so why did her Ivy die? She admits that during “this season of walking through immense loss, to have life in [my niece’s] name … it was hard.”
“Your faithfulness in all of the green.”
Kari goes on to explain that in her season of despair, she moved into a new house. After living there for some time, she discovered a newly-revived, lush garden growing in her backyard. She had no idea that there was a garden, and was shocked to find ivy–winding and thriving.
Kari felt “so surrounded with life.” She explains, “God’s presence was filling me with life and joy in the midst of such a hard season.” As further evidence of God’s care for His children, Kari realized that the garden must have been planted long ago. God had planned ahead for this very moment in her life–when she most needed hope.
God intended for His handiwork to be a sign of His love and faithfulness. Indeed, Psalm 104:24-25 acknowledges God’s remarkable creation: “How many are your works, Lord! In wisdom you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures. There is the sea, vast and spacious, teeming with creatures beyond number – living things both large and small.”
Similarly, in “The Garden,” Kari proclaims, “I can see the ivy, reaching through the wall; ‘cause you will stop at nothing to heal my broken soul.”
But even with this new understanding of God’s love, Kari was not done learning and growing. As she prepared to perform at Bethel Music Conference in L.A., she heard God say, “I want you to stay curious. You don’t have me figured out.”
God continues to challenge Kari to dive deeper; even this inspiring Christian worship leader is nowhere near done with exploring God’s true nature. According to Kari, because everyone is on a unique faith journey, each person will uncover something different in “The Garden.”
The bottom line: No matter where you are on your faith journey, stay curious–like a child–intentionally seeking His love in the intricacies of His handiwork.
“Now I see redemption growing in the trees…”
Kari explains that the arc of the song is this: It starts with honesty, confiding your fears and struggles to God. Then you lift your eyes, “letting God show you that he’s up to something beautiful.” This is the heart of the father; he has “invited us into life.”
And you don’t have to have it all figured out. Simply approach God in wonder. When you do so, you will “see redemption, growing in the trees; the death and resurrection in every single seed.”