There is a vine that grows uninvited in my garden. It is a vine similar to Morning Glories but it never flowers. It just grows, spreading out in in all directions. A little plant here and little one there and soon, if not checked, it will have entwined itself into every plant, or garden item you have.
It looks so rustic, even romantic twining its way around my red garden seat. But it is invasive, and loves to grow.
The kids are I were weeding on Saturday and we were pulling this vine out from every corner and plant in the front garden.
It struck me what wonderful lessons are to be had in the garden, important life lessons. God is a gardener, too and He teaches me using illustrations I can understand and relate too. This lesson came to me quickly and I shared it with my kids.
"This vine is like sin. When this plant is small it is so easy to pull it out by it's roots and get rid of it. But when we let it go, and don't pull it out - the longer we turn a blind eye to its growth and invasive nature - the longer we pretend, even, that it's not there - we'll then it becomes so hard to root out. We can pull it out of the other plants and through it away, we can get most of it, but it is really hard to get it all. Sin is like that. If we pretend that we can't see that sin, or we don't want to take the time to do the work of rooting it out - pulling it - then it can continue to grow in our lives - twining its way into every area, making it much harder to get it all out. But if we deal with sin right away, then it can't take hold in our hearts and lives. We can pull it out and it is easier to maintain. The garden of our lives will be much more beautiful without the tangle of sin covering our beauty, and bringing us down."
They got it right away - they understood it because they were in the middle of pulling the weeds that we had let go for too long, and had turned a blind eye too.
I am thankful for their teachable hearts. That day I had run errands and had come home to Rachel and Sarah making laundry detergent. Sarah had an index card taped to her shirt (very Sarah like) and I asked what it was about. The card read Self-Control. She told me that it was Rachel's idea that they each pick a word that they needed to work on - Rachel chose Patience. She wrote a verse on her index card from James 1 and put it in her pocket. They encouraged each other all day. So they were open and ready for my quick little 2 minute lesson in the garden while we worked.
I am also thankful for the work of the Holy Spirit I see in their lives.
Our goal is to weed a bit everyday. That way we get used to it being daily work, and it never becomes a large hated chore. And when we work together we get more accomplished and the burden is lighter for everyone.
How important this work of weeding is, in both our physical and spiritual lives. I don't really enjoy it at all, but it is oh, so necessary.