Stories

My Gardening Fails, Your Spiritual Tips

I might be the worst gardener in the world. Here are some spiritual tips from a horrible gardener.

Here are some spiritual tips from a horrible gardener.--click to tweet this!--

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After living in “the city” for several years, my wife’s dream came true and we moved into the country. Behind the house we purchased were two small, raised gardens, but we had dreams for something much bigger.

Having had a small, yet fruitful garden in town, we wanted to expand our garden into an open field behind our new home.

The Epic Garden

I rented the biggest tiller I could find and spent four hours being tossed around behind the machine. I zigged and zagged through the grassy field turning up rich soil, which would soon be our lush garden.

We spent the next few days planting seeds and watering. We had beans, peas, carrots, squash, pumpkins, sweet corn, strawberries, and watermelon. There were rows and rows of future dinners. We imagined haveing so much extra that we would be freezing and canning, and giving it away to friends.

As the summer passed, the grass that had been tilled under began to grow back. Before long, we could barely find our little plants amidst the jungle of grass.

By the end of the season, there wasn’t a single bite of food from the entire garden. The few corn stalks and beans that had made it had been destroyed by deer, and we were left with a huge patch of two-foot grass. Not the garden we planned.

The Epic Garden – Year Two

The following year, I killed all the grass. I bought a huge container of grass and weed killer, and with my organic wife reluctantly agreeing, sprayed the thriving grass leaving it all brown within a week.

A few weeks later, we planted our seeds again, and watered it carefully — this time hoping for a different result. To our pleasant surprise, the plants began to sprout and we began planning what we would do with all the food!

However, even though we had sprayed for weeds, the well-watered ground proved to be quite nourishing for a new batch of weeds. Our schedules were busy and we didn’t get back to pull weeds very often, and you can probably guess what happened next.

By the end of the summer, we had 4-foot tall weeds… and not a single green bean.

We wanted to have a garden, but we didn’t want to pull weeds. It turns out, that is probably the most important part of gardening. If you don’t pull the weeds, they quickly smother out the plants that are good.

If you don’t pull the weeds, they quickly smother out the plants that are good.--click to tweet this!--

If I look at my life, I see plenty of weeds. Things I do that waste time, sins that I commit, bad habits, grudges, and things I fail to do. All of those things can smother out the good things in life. If I don’t pull those weeds, they can keep growing and multiplying until they consume my whole life.

We need to be aware of the good things in our lives — the relationships and activities that make us better people. What are the things that bring you closer to God? These are the things that should be nourished.

However, if something does the opposite; distracts you from God, or pulls you away from Him, that would be a weed. So in addition to making time for the good things, we have to be actively removing the negative things that can take over our day.

We all have weeds in our life that we can identify as holding us back from being the person God calls us to be. So don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty and pull them. By removing the weeds in our own lives, we will be much more fruitful.

I’ve given up on gardening for now. And this Lent, I’m trying to pull the weeds and make more room for the things that matter.

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What are some of the weeds in your life?

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