The little seed spent the winter in a jelly glass on the top shelf of a chinacupboard. It was only a seed and very, very small. How could it ever be a vine with sweet-smelling blossoms? When spring came, the Nice Lady made a hole for the seed and planted it in her garden at the base of a trellis. It felt soft in the hole, but also cold and dark. Don't worry, said the Earth. God has planned something beautiful for you. The little seed did not believe it. But as time passed, and the sun shone, and the rain fell, the little seed began to feel something unexpected. . . .
Subtitled a "Story of Encouragement for All Ages," the Trellis and the Seed
tells the story of how "God has planned something beautiful" for even the tiniest, most unassuming little seed.
The tiny seed begins its mysterious journey in the hands of the seemingly omnipotent "Nice Lady," who predicts--much to the seed's disbelief--that it will make a "beautiful vine with sweet-smelling blossoms." Even as the Nice Lady plants the seed, erects an ambitious trellis, waits for rain, adds fertilizer, and performs all her other nurserial oblations, the seed continues to be baffled by its caretaker's faith. ("It was only a seed, and very, very small. How could it ever be a beautiful vine with blossoms?") How indeed? Suffice it to say, God doesn't send a crafty bird to eat the seed in a harrowing third-act changeup.
Jan Karon's story of patience and faith shows the same folksy charm that infuses her Mitford Years series, and her gentle words find a soothing complement in the skilled, muted watercolors of Robert Gantt Steele (of the Her Story series). (Ages 4 to 8) --Paul Hughes