Snow is falling in Western Newfoundland. It’s hard to imagine right now that in a few months, it will be time again to dig in the soil and plant. I love the snow and hope we get lots more of it, but it’s also wonderful to think about the dirt beneath the drifts getting some rest, or whatever dirt does during the cold winter months.

In his essay, “Obedient to the Earth: Learning Humility from the Humus,” the Rev. Ragan Sutterfield reflects on soil and helps me better understand the relationship between humility and humus and the wonder of dirt.

Today’s reflection is an excerpt from his essay, which appears in our new book Saving Words. We are very happy that today we get to hear the author read the excerpt and talk about why he chose to focus on the word, “humility.”

You can listen here.

You can watch a video of the excerpt here.

Ragan Sutterfield reads an excerpt from his essay, “Obedient to the Earth.”

The Rev. Ragan Sutterfield is a priest in The Episcopal Church and serves a parish in his native Arkansas. He is the author of several books and is at work on a new book exploring humus and humility, soil science and Christian spirituality. You can find out more about Rev. Sutterfield at

The featured image for this post is by Karolina Grabowska on You can find out more about Saving Words at

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