But they do.
They really do.
Yesterday morning while on my hands and knees pulling weeds, a thought came to my mind:
if there weren't weeds that popped up daily in my garden, I may not tend it as I should.
I know there will be new weeds every morning so I check my garden daily to keep the weeds at bay.
But weeds aren't the only thing that can hurt my garden plants.
There are predators who prey on the tender plants. In my garden Peter Rabbit and one of his sisters love to eat the pepper and cabbage plants.
There could be overcrowding. I am one who hates to pull up some of the little plants to make room for their sisters and brothers to flourish. But it's necessary for strong plants and a good harvest.
Some of the plants sometimes need extra attention. Presently I have one tomato plant who looks a bit sickly. I want to save her so I am giving her extra care.
In established gardens you sometimes need to move plants that come back on their own in order for them to get enough sunlight. I don't need to do this yet but one day . . .
I might not notice any of this if I wasn't checking my garden daily for weeds.
Weeds came into our lives thanks to Adam. They first show up in Genesis 3:17-18. God says to Adam, "Cursed is the ground because of you; In toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life. Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you; And you shall eat the plants of the field."
This is a curse, but it is also an ongoing spiritual illustration for what we need to do with our own hearts for those who will see it.
Psalm 26:2 says, "Examine me, O LORD, and try me; Test my mind and my heart."
In 1 Corinthians 11:28 we are told to, "examine" ourselves to make sure our hearts are right.
We live on earth. We live on good soil (just like the good soil in my garden). But the earth of our hearts will naturally bring up weeds because we are still sinners even after we've accepted Christ as our Lord and Savior. We aren't to condemn ourselves (Romans 8:1). We are to let God wash us clean and begin anew. Tiny weeds crop up. Maybe you find a bit of envy. Maybe there is some resentment in your heart. Maybe you find some lust or unforgiveness.
Whatever it is, don't condemn. Give it to God and ask Him to make you like Him.
Lamentations 3:22-23 says, "The LORD's lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, For His compassions never fail. They are new every moring; Great is Thy Faithfulness."
I love how The Message says it:
"God’s loyal love couldn’t have run out,
his merciful love couldn’t have dried up.
They’re created new every morning.
How great your faithfulness!
I’m sticking with God (I say it over and over).
He’s all I’ve got left."
There are spiritual applications to all my garden examples. We have a predator who seeks to devour our souls. We sometimes need to get rid of overcrowding within -- we need to let go of and say no to things God hasn't called to do. We can't do everything. We need to do what we've been called to do. Nothing more. Nothing less. And sometimes established practices need to be moved around or changed so the light of Christ can reach every part of us.
"Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven." Matthew 5:16
We are here for Him and Him alone.