a Dead Plant
by Mrs. Frodo
are plenty of stories throughout the lives of the saints concerning the
foolish things prospective members of religious orders were told to do
by their superiors as tests of obedience and patience. The ones that
stick with me (no pun intended) always begin with some hapless novice
being ordered to water and care for a brittle, lifeless stick lying on
The most impatient novice might refuse outright...and be shown the gate
for her pride and lack of humility. But the meek, obedient novice would
set about caring for her ‘charge’ as instructed.
Just so, Frodo accepted responsibility for a dead, shriveled plant––a
ridiculous quest, hopeless, downright idiotic. No way was that plant
going to respond when its sap had long since dried away, leaving it so
frail that a careless move could snap its trunk. Success was
impossible. Yet...as insane as it was, this useless dried up twig was
the only chance Middle-Earth had. So he and his foolish Fellowship took
As the stories go, every great, greeeaaat once-in-a-while, after the
novice had begun her silly task, Mother Superior would check on the
stick and find it flushed green, covered with blossoms, more alive than
other bit of green in the convent grounds.
As Mother Teresa said, the call is not to be successful. The call is to
Higher, wider forces prised the buds free of the bark, but the watering
and tending which made it possible were Frodo’s.