Contemplating destruction

Re-reading Henri Nouwen's "The Genesee Diary" I got to the part about how work can be done in a contemplative spirit:

If I have learned anything this week, it is that there is a contemplative way of working that is more important for me than praying, reading, or singing.  Most people think that you go to the monastery to pray.  Well, I have prayed more this week than before but also discovered that I have not learned yet to make the work of my hands into a prayer

My day job requires more thought than Nouwen's monastery jobs of washing raisins and bagging bread, but we're gardening this weekend.  Summer has officially started, I have my first bug bite, therefore it's time to tame the yard.  I'm planning to go out with the loppers and shears, beat a few bushes into submission, excavate a wire bench one of the cottonwoods is trying to absorb, trim the unidentified green stuff hanging over the drive, attack the honeysuckle, and generally tidy things up.  This is not a task requiring much thought beyond "Chop!  Hack!  Destroy!"  Can you do contemplative slash-and-prune yard work?  This won't be nice civilised gardening with gloves and a trowel and a kneeling pad, this will be hard manual labour, works of destruction with sharp tools.  Doesn't seem to quite fit with prayer, but I'll try.  Adam and Eve were gardeners too.

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