One of my favorite things to do with my house is outside my house, yard work. I love the visual display of a well-groomed yard and the colors and variations in the landscaping. It truly sets the tone to be inviting to any guest that comes by. There's even a show dedicated to "curb appeal".
While I don't profess to be any sort of a plant enthusiast or even educated well enough in which plants grow best and how plants, bushes and flowers should be arranged to be aesthetically pleasing, I try my best with that I do know.
I know that some bushes spread out. I know that some flowers bloom in the spring, summer, late summer and fall. I know that some plants have to be thinned out and can be transplanted for a fuller effect. I know that trees and bushes must be trimmed to produce more growth the following year. I also know which plants/flowers don't require much of me, which is my forte!
What I don't know or understand is where the HECK all the dang weeds come from??!!!!????
For the first time this year, we chose to employ a fertilizing company to help take care of our grass. It has looked far better than we would have imagined and could do on our own. That still left me with the weeding the flowerbeds and I swear they multiply like rabbits!
When we first moved here, I weeded my garden/flower beds religiously every single week. I enjoyed getting out and therapeutically weeding out to prevent the overtake of the beauty. As the years have changed in my availability to do so, the desire none the less has still remained. I even joke with neighbors that if my yard looks really good and there aren't any weeds, it probably means I've had a rough time lately and that's my outlet. If my lawn looks horrible, then life is good.
Isn't that kind of backwards in theory? Yet it's the honest truth.
Let's think about pulling the weeds out of our gardens/flower beds similar to cleaning up the mess that choke, kill and uglify (yep that has to be a word) in our lives. Just as the weeds in our garden threaten the beauty and growth of the landscape, so too does hatred, anger, lack of forgiveness, justified wrong doings, etc place on our hearts.
The longer we let the weeds grow within us, the harder it is to pull them out, and the longer it takes.
Last week, I finally made the effort to weed my front yard. It took me an hour to do just a small area, and once I was done, it was well worth the effort. Then I looked around and realized that THERE WAS STILL SO MUCH LEFT TO BE DONE! I looked at the rest in defeat and immediately felt like the effort I did make wasn't worth it because of how much was left. There wasn't any more space in my garbage to handle what still needed to be done, so I took off my gloves, hung my head low and went inside feeling defeated from not completing the task at hand. Later that day as I was pulling into my driveway, my heart became happy as I noticed the dramatic change from the mornings work I had put in.
It really did make a difference what little I was able to accomplish!
So too does the little efforts we make on a consistent basis to become better and rid ourselves of the weeds in our lives. We can't be discontent that everything doesn't get cleaned up at the same time. In reality, I waited too long to weed, therefore it was more than I my trashcan and my time could handle. You see, the longer we wait to do what brightens our lives and our spirits, the harder it becomes, and the easier it is to wait until the metaphorical 'winter' comes and kills it all. Then we could sit back and wait for the spring and start all over. Think about all the efforts that are put into preparing the yard for the spring; it encourages the flowers to bloom quicker, the grass to come back thicker and greener, and less work has to be done at the beginning to truly enjoy the fruits of our labors. So too is the effort we make, even if small, leads to our better futures.
EVERY TIME I weed my yard I reflect on the misdeeds, hurt, pain, etc in my life that I must clean up to allow for my inner beauty and light to shine through. We all have this light! We must rid ourselves of the darkness of sin, idleness, complaining, victimization, hatred, etc that drowns out this light.
As winter approaches Utah, it kind of felt like it came overnight, I think about how I can continue to weed my life. Without the constant reminder of my yard, I'm not sure what could be that positive trigger to do so. What could I use?