Our Stories

Dig A Little Deeper

May 1, 2017

“He began to DIG again,

driving his spade DEEP into the rich black garden soil

while the robin hopped about very busily employed.”

-The head gardener, Ben Weatherstaff, in The Secret Garden

Sometimes the treasures in your garden, life and relationships aren’t found on the surface. It’s only when you dig a little deeper that you find the good stuff buried below.

One of my favorite things to plant each season are potatoes, specifically sweet potatoes.  I start them old school style in my kitchen window each spring and plant them into my garden in early summer.

Once in the ground, if happy, the vines will create a small jungle of vines with lovely, heart shaped leaves. And when it’s time, they will burst forth in purple trumpet-like flowers, announcing to me, the gardener, that all is well below the surface.

Then, after the first winter freeze, the vines on the surface die.

This is when my daughter and I get giddy with excitement. We grab our bucket, spades and the forky-looking thing (that I can never seem to remember the name of), and head down to the garden for a morning of treasure hunting!

We dig and dig, squeal with glee each time we find one, and boast loudly when we think we have just pulled up the BIGGEST ONE yet. It is utter and complete joy to me…and just writing this makes my heart full.


when we think we have found them all 

and are exhausted from the digging, 

we go back in and DIG A LITTLE DEEPER.

Bruce Barton said, “The big rewards come to those who travel the second, un-demanded mile.”

The potatoes we find in this “extra mile” are our favorites, because they were the forgotten ones that we would have missed if we didn’t put in the extra effort, endurance and patience. They are the sweetest of rewards.

How many things in your life have you missed because you didn’t take the time it takes to dig a little deeper??

Unlike the sweet potatoes who signal “all is well” with their bright purple blossoms…our outward appearances, social media posts, and even our words and actions…don’t always tell the full story of what is happening down deep in our hearts.

So we have to DIG a little DEEPER. 

A few years ago, my daughter came home complaining about a kid at school who was misbehaving in her class. When she was done venting, I asked her to tell me about the child’s life outside of school.

Her eyes widened with sadness as she recounted the troubles at home, that no longer included a Mom or a Dad. In just one moment, her heart broke open and it was empathy and love that poured back out instead of the frustration and anger that was there before.

This child today is a favorite friend, whom my daughter has since “looked after” with a sense of purpose. Digging deeper produced the sweetest reward for her: a friend.


We are all tempted to live life just on the surface. It feels safe there. But in order to grow, we must be willing to get our hands dirty and dig deeper, because that is where our dreams and gifts are planted. Had I not dug deeper into my own life, I wouldn’t have unearthed my love of writing that I had buried under years of busyness more than 20 years ago.

“…the door is locked and the Key is buried DEEP.”

-The Secret Garden

This week I want to encourage you to DIG DEEPER in your own garden, life and relationships.

Instead of asking “How are you?”…Dig Deeper and Ask:

What are you dreaming about these days?


What are you doing…that is just for you?


What makes you happy?

I wonder what treasures you will unlock or find?

Happy Hunting,

FHB and Especially Me