Ivan walked up to my desk with a huge leaf. After some short inquiry, Ivan explains that due to the rain, a huge weed had grown up in his garden next to all the things he has planted. So I asked him, “Ivan, did you pull that big weed?” And he said, “I was going to, but I decided it was too big to just pull out.”
As Ivan relayed the story of his weed to me, it caused me to begin to think about life and the things we plant in our garden. We choose to plant all this wonderful stuff in our lives, the fruit of the Spirit shall we say… love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and self-control. What a beautiful looking garden that can be easily infested with the smallest weed. Let’s call it selfish ambition. No one thinks too much of it, but before you know it, it grows into something bigger: dissensions and factions. (Ephesians 5)
I find myself sometimes seeing my weeds like Ivan… it’s too big to just throw away. Instead I’ll dig it up and plant it a little further from the good things in my garden and somehow expect it to never infiltrate. What a lie I have fed myself. Just dig it up and get rid of it already. I want only good things in my garden, the fruit of the Spirit. So, I’m choosing to let Jesus dig up that selfishness that loves to loom in my heart and replace it with this command: Love your neighbor as yourself. Instead of looking out for my own interests, Jesus is asking me to look out for the interests of others. I think it’s time to get the shovel.