Parable of the Pilfered Pears

Filole Pears

Filole Pears

Gardeners come every Tuesday at our place. They mow, edge, and rake leaves. A few months ago, I was busy at home, the gardeners were almost finished with the back yard. All that was let to do was collect a large pile of leaves that sat under the tree. Eventually, the guy showed up in the back yard with his plastic garbage can and a rake, only he didn’t stop at the pile of leaves under the tree. He passed the leaves, walked past the sliding glass doors toward the guava tree, and there, he plopped down the can and rake.

Huh?  I thought to myself.

I went to the glass doors to try and see what he was doing at the side of the yard, but he was out of view. The only thing visible was the unused rake propped inside of the empty trash can. I waited a few minutes. Still, no gardener. What is he doing? I thought.

So, I opened the sliding glass door, making enough noise to let him know I was home. Nothing. I let a few more minutes pass, trying to give him the benefit of the doubt. No sign of him. That’s when I decided to go out and confront the man. I slid open the screen door, stepped out onto the lawn and found the guy inside my guava bushes picking, eating, and hoarding fruit. His pockets were crammed full of guavas, piles of fruit on the ground, hands full, face stuffed, and a mess of empty guava skins all over the lawn!

“What are you doing?” I said somewhat miffed.

“Oh,” He stood wide-eyed like a deer caught in the headlights as the fruit dropped randomly from his hands.

He scrambled to grab the can and rake and went over to collect the pile of leaves under the tree. As I turned to go back into the house – get this – HE WENT BACK OVER TO THE BUSH, TOOK THE PILES OF PICKED FRUIT, AND LEFT GUAVA SKIN MESS ALL OVER THE LAWN! 

Are you kidding me?!

Now, in the past, gardeners have helped themselves to the fruit, which has been fine, but this time – stripping my plants empty just seemed to cross a line, don’t you think?

The nerve!

Immediately, I shot a short, curt email to the gardening manager, informing him of the clepto gardener stealing fruit (from our personal bushes that we planted when we moved into this place).  The rest of the afternoon, I stewed.  When I picked my boys up from school, I shared the antics of the shady gardener. They joined me in being perturbed (it’s nice to have company in my miserableness). Then when my husband came home, I, again, enthusiastically detailed the outrageous behavior of the gardener.

The next morning, I was not finished replaying the episode in my head. I went on my power walk, still ticked. Then, an interesting thing happened in the middle of my walk – the Spirit suddenly joined me and said, “Julie, I think you are forgetting about your outing with Sue.” With that, I felt the Spirit sort of smirk at me.  I searched my memory, Outing with Sue? Outing with Sue…AAAaaah…OOOoooh… Filole House!


Filole Apples

Filole House and Gardens
For my birthday outing, my good friend, Sue, took me over to Filole Mansion off of 280, just past Half Moon Bay (California). The place was used in the 1978 movie Heaven Can Wait, with Warren Beatty, James Mason, and Julie Christie. A beautiful mansion on hundreds of acres, owned by some mining tycoon in the turn of the century. Now it is a State Park.

We toured the house, and the beautifully quaffed gardens. The gardens are laid out very geometrically English style with narrow pathways leading around colorful flower beds, large manicured lawns, through sculpted bushes, lush trees, vegetable gardens, and small orchards.

One area I loved in particular: the vining walls of fruit. That’s right, vining fruit walls. As apple trees and pear trees grew, they manipulated branches by wiring them to a trellis-type fence. As the branches grew, it filled in the 12-foot high trellis, creating a large green wall of fruit that spanned for dozens of yards.

Along this apple-pear wall, they had labeled all of the many varieties of apples and pears with little wooden plaques, many of which I had never heard of. I was in awe. It was gorgeous fruit.  Almost looked as if they should be photographed for a Martha Stewart Magazine.

And, there was a lot of it.  In fact, not only were the vining walls over-laden with fruit, there was fruit all over the ground, rotting. No one had been picking the gorgeous fruit. What is going on here?  I thought. This is just a shameful waste. Something must be done.

I resolved to help remedy the predicament. So, I began picking fruit. I picked 2, 3, 4 varieties of apples.  5, 6, 7 varieties of pears. I kept walking and nonchalantly picking and dropping the pilfered fruit into my purse.  For about half an hour I walked, looked over my shoulder, and gathered.  Sue was having fun just watching and laughing at me.

And I would have kept going, except I ran out of room in my purse. Had I known I was going to hit a bounty, I would have brought one of my boys’ school backpacks and worn a black hoody.

I was proud of myself…that is, until the Spirit compared me to the Thief Gardener!

“What goes around, comes around,” was the Spirit’s message.
“What you sow – you reap.
Life is one even balance, Julie.
Watch what you send out because it will boomerang back and hit you –
          maybe even convict you.
But, when you send out positive, loving energy – when you give kind, loving service –
          That will come back to bless you ten times over.”

The Spirit kept repeating the message over and over again for the remainder of the day.

Busted by the Spirit.

Lesson?  I had no right to get angry with that gardener, for I was guilty of the very same thing.  Shame on me.  And, who knows, he may have needed the food. I didn’t.

What the Spirit was enforcing is something I’ve called the Boomerang Effect.


The Boomerang Effect
The Boomerang Effect follows the same principle as throwing a boomerang.  What happens when you throw a boomerang?  It returns.  Boomerangs:  the shape and design of the wood allows it to follow complex laws of physics, travel through the air in a circular motion, and return to your hand.  It’s really quite amazing.

Well, there is a law of the universe that follows the same principle – not with wind or flight, but with energy.  It’s the Law of Return.

You’ve heard it said, “What goes around, comes around.”  True principle.  What we send out – returns to us.  If we send out goodness, goodness comes back to us.  If we send out negative energy, negative energy returns to us.  Listen to this verse.

He made a pit, and digged it, and is fallen into the ditch which he made.
His mischief shall return upon his own head,
and his violent dealings shall come down upon his own plate.
Psalm 7:15-16

What goes around, comes around.  Life is made up of energy.  Life is a constant transference of energy.  What you send out (negative or positive) is what comes back to you.  This is why happiness increases when we help others.  We are simply reaping what we sow.

Question is, what kind of energy do you want in your life?

Is the energy in your life not going in the direction you would like?  Take a lesson from the Parable of the Pilfered Pears.  The energy you send out is the energy that returns back to you – 10 times over.

Think I’ll give Filole House a call and ‘fess up.




They are starting to put ads on our blog. We do not approve these and are not getting any residuals whatsoever, so I apologize for the content. I’ll see what I can do about it.


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