I love gardening, but not all parts of it. My specialty is the hand work; digging in the dirt on my hands and knees, especially weeding. I love pulling weeds. Leave the big stuff like mowing and fertilizing to someone else. So – you would assume my own yard is picture perfect – and weedless. Not true.
Yet, that has never stopped me from pulling others’ weeds. I was waiting in a restaurant line once and could not resist pulling the weeds in their outdoor flower boxes. My daughters were horrified and embarrassed and made me stop. I was reminded of all this while I was power walking early this morning before the heat of the day. My eyes kept straying to yards I passed where a weed or stray sapling cried out to be pulled. Don’t worry…I resisted.
Anyhow, I find my spiritual life is often in a similar state. I’m drawn to noticing the weeds, (code word for flaws) in other people’s lives and I have an overwhelming desire to yank them out so their garden will be lovely and flawless. What about my own little garden? Now that’s another matter. I can look right past my own weeds, or make really elaborate excuses for why they can’t be uprooted.
Hey, whose garden is it anyway? Do I have the right to be hopping my own fence to examine someone else’s life? Romans 14:4 says; “They are God’s servants, not yours. They are responsible to him, not to you. Let him tell them whether they are right or wrong. And God is able to make them do as they should.” (TLB Translation)
Gulp! I better get out there and weed…in my own yard that is.