Thistles in the Yard
Ponderings and Musings about Some Lessons of Life
In Granny’s yard, there is a wet spot. It had begun to grow a thistle forest. I don’t mean any small forest, either. Some thistles were taller than me and thicker than one finger. As you know, thistles proliferate very well. So, there were probably about 100 thistles in the front yard in the period of about 2 weeks. We all saw them, and commented on them. Digging up thistles seemed to be a very upleasant job. It seemed to have no rewards. However, if someone didn’t do something, the yard would be overtaken and the problem would be bigger and worse. So, I took a shovel in hand on Saturday and began to eliminate the thistles that I saw. It didn’t take very long, really. Only about an hour of time spent to render the yard thistle-free for the current moment. I fully expect to have outcroppings of thistles for a while as some had seed and freely shared their seeds when I removed them from the life-giving surface of the earth. There were rewards, though. It’s an analogy really, a story. A combination of new and old paths of learning and growing within me crossed and bore fruit. :)
Our lives and hearts can be like a yard or a garden. We plant things, let things be planted, and let a few areas grow wild. Sometimes there are thistles in our hearts and lives. If we don’t do something about them in a timely manner, then soon we will have a thistle forest and no other growth. Our beautiful spots will become weeds.
Sometimes thistles in your yard affect your neighbors’ yards. (I currently think of family and those under the same roof with you, but the idea can be expanded further.)
When you see someone with a beautiful garden of life, you know that work goes into it. Work goes into development and planning and maintaining. When you stop maintaining, weeds and thistles will eventually overtake other plants. .
Talking about who should or could or didn’t does not remove thistles. Time, labor and a shovel will do the trick every time. :)
You can use poison to kill the thistles quicker, leaving more time for other endeavors. However, your use of poison will have long-term effects on the soil, the water, and future residents (both human and animal).
You can receive a well-manicured lawn as a gift, without any effort on your part. If you do not invest effort, it will not remain a well-manicured lawn indefinitely.
We have a choice as to the kind of life-garden that we want to develop (or not) and to live within.
Our children’s hearts get thistles placed in them. We can weed their garden and show them how to tend their garden, or let the thistles grow and create destruction.
God is trying his best to do the same for us.
And what does God say are the thistles in our lives and hearts? Jealousy, arrogance, acting unbecomingly, seeking our own, becoming provoked, taking wrongs suffered into account(unforgiveness), rejoicing in unrighteousness, sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery, idolatry and witchcraft, hatred, discord, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and the like…(loosely borrowed from 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 and Galations 5:19-21)
Sometimes we keep re-planting our thistles!!!! We’re used to seeing them there. What would life be without them? That’s how our family operates. Etc., etc., etc…. Fill in your own excuses here. :)
Thistles don’t usually grow very well in healthy soil. And what does God have to say about healthy soil? It produces patience, kindness, rejoices with truth, bears, hopes, believes, and endures, loves, joyfulness, peacefulness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. (also loosely borrowed from 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 and Galations 5:22)
Imagine the kind of lawn or garden that you want your heart to become. It will grow into your vision, with some help from the Master Gardner. :)