by Heather Bock
I’m in the middle of a writers contest. I would love if you’d be willing to vote for me by clicking “like” under my picture at thejenweaver.com/writers-contest. I can’t make it without you! The contest is for my book review for Jen Weaver’s book A Wife’s Secret to Happiness, which is here, if you’d like to read it!
Also don’t miss a chance to win a book I’m giving away at the end of this post!
If weeds with their thorns aren’t causing problems, keeping bare feet off the lawn, they are at least likely causing problems by crowding out the good plants or grass you want to grow. The density of my lawn is pretty strong against weeds by the end of fall (by the way, my friend, Tiffany Elder, wrote a GREAT post about this way of getting rid of the weeds of sin in your life–I hope you go read it here). Unfortunately, my grass goes dormant in the winter, and come spring, the weeds wake up far sooner than the grass. If I don’t get those weeds out of there, the grass will have a lot of trouble finding the space it needs to flourish. The good is choked out, and the yard starts to look chaotic and messy.
My yard is not far from the picture of the demon-possessed man Jesus clothed and put in his right mind in Luke 8. You know, the one living naked out among the tombs bound in chains and shackles whose demons were sent into a herd of pigs that promptly threw themselves off a cliff? Yes, it’s almost that bad in places. Your sin might not look quite that bad at this point, but sin’s going to take us down that path–something like that is the eventual end. God is not the author of chaos and confusion (I Cor. 14:33). In the beginning, He brought order out of chaos (Gen. 1:2–some of the definitions of “formless” in the Hebrew is “confusion, wilderness, chaos”), and He still does.
In order to keep those weeds from taking over, a lot of labor is going to take place. It’s not going to happen on its own. We have to intentionally go after them and yank them out. And when the weed problem gets out of control, sometimes we need help.
I’ve been focusing most of my attention on the weeds in my front and back yard. I hadn’t noticed the side yard, the one with no fence between it and my neighbor’s side yard–the neighbor who used to weed my yard before it belonged to us to make sure our weeds didn’t get into her yard–the neighbor who used to work for a garden nursery. Yes, THAT is the side yard I hadn’t noticed, and it. was. bad. It was more dollar weed, henbit, and clover than grass. I didn’t think I could make a dent in it, but I went out there with my three kids and set the timer for thirty minutes. At the end of that time, our 32 gallon Rubbermaid was more than half full, and except for a big patch of dollar weed close to our driveway, the weeds were pretty much gone.
When it comes to sin, we need our weeding buddies, too. No, nobody can really get the sin out of our hearts for us, but people can sure help. If I know someone is going to lovingly but firmly and regularly ask me how I’m doing with some sin with which I’m struggling, I’m a lot less likely to fall into the temptation of that sin. People help in other ways than just accountability. When I confess my sin to friends, the weight is often lifted, and I fall out of the spell of that sin. James 5:16 says, “Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed.”
When I pull weeds, even when I do my best and take out the root, I still leave bits of the root there, allowing for next year’s growth. My kids (and even my desperate neighbor) can jump in and help, but it’s not an ultimate fix. I can spray chemicals aimed at broad leaves on my lawn, but even that can backfire, harming good bugs, the water supply, and even my own children as they run through the now thorn-less yard.
In the end, only One exists who can truly rid us of any weedy sin problem. Please come back next week to see not only how He does that, but why we can literally call Him the Master Gardener.
I’m in the middle of a giveaway for a little board book called Bible Basics by Danielle Hitchen. Here’s what you need to do to enter my giveaway:
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Giveaways are open to residents of the continental U.S. and Canada only.
I’ve extended this drawing to next Wednesday, so I will announce the winner then. If I don’t hear from the winner within a week, I will draw another name. Thank you!