I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful, I know that full well. Psalm 139:14
I will never be accused of being called a Gardener.
Whereas there are those born with green thumbs and under their attentive care, they can coast even the most reluctant plant to grow, I am not one of them. My thumb is brown and if ever someone could kill a cactus, well it would be me.
Its not that I don’t like plants or enjoy the natural beauty that flowers automatically lend to any environment, but its just that I don’t really enjoy the work and care that goes into helping them to grow and stay healthy. Sad, but true. And although I know I could improve the outside decor of my home by adding plants and flowers to bring character and charm to my yard, in spite of my good intentions, it never seems to happen.
But tonight as I sat on my porch, I caught a whiff of the most aromatic fragrance that had ever tantalized my nose and it caused my mind to move in a new direction not just for my yard, but for my life.
The scent that caught my attention was the unmistakable scent of honeysuckle. To me there’s no sweeter scent to enjoy on a cool summer night than that of honeysuckle as it rides the evening wind and becomes one with the night air. Glorious indeed!
But as I thought about the honeysuckle lying in thick vines along my back fence, I couldn’t help but also think about the many weeds and overgrown brush that also resides in my backyard. I keep telling myself I’m going to hire someone to remove all of the weeds and overgrown brush around my house, but somehow it keeps moving further and further down on my to-do list of projects for the house and it never gets done.
In the meantime, the weeds continue to grow at an alarming rate and unfortunately they also outnumber anything of beauty that would dare to grow around my yard.
And I realized that not only are these weeds growing fast and overtaking the yard and house, but they were also doing some other damage. For as long as I allowed them to continue to grow, and be the yard bullies that they are, they will continue to steal from and deprive much needed space and nutrients for the honeysuckle and other things that were planted to add beauty to the world around them.
Allowed to continue to grow, they’ll continue to disguise themselves as harmless plants or even small trees or bushes. They will continue to invade space that was not intended for them. Like silent thieves little by little, they will continue to steal what does not belong to them as though they had a right to grow there.
And as I reflected on the weeds in my yard, my mind turned to the weeds in my life. Those things that cover up or hide those things God created in me meant to add something to the world around me. Those things that threaten to overtake my creativity or silence my creative voice. Those silent weeds that little by little and over time have invaded spaces in my life that God never intended them to occupy.
And so sitting in my moment with God, enjoying my honeysuckle scented night, together God and I identified some of my weeds. And unlike the weeds in my yard that I have allowed to grow and thrive, I don’t plan to let these weeds get pushed down on my life’s to-do list for another moment.
But armed with my faith and the other tools God has handed me, I plan to start weeding out the weeds of my life so that like the honeysuckle, I too might lend myself to the world as a thing of creative beauty. For I am fearfully and wonderfully made. And God never intended for anything, weed or person to overshadow who He created me to be.
I may never be a gardener or enjoy outside yard work, this is true. But perhaps as I turn to the true Gardener of my own life, and allow Him access to those weed filled areas of my life, I will become inspired to do the same with my yard and the world around me.