My intent was to sew tomato seeds, but instead, our Father drew me elsewhere. The flowering Clematis vine, climbing over an archway, needed cosmetic work. Many of last year’s withered growth were still attached to the vine and their presence, mixed with new growth, was an eye sore. Snipping away wasn’t easy. Periodically, I would snip what appeared to be a dead branch, only to realize that higher up, growth had already began. Sadly, that entire branch had to be pulled off because it was no longer connected to the living vine.
With the sun overhead, the work on the vine became difficult and so I moved on to the mulched area underneath two tall cedar trees. Multitudes of wind blown Laurel seeds had dropped from else where, taking root in a large area that should have been protected by mulch. Painstakingly, I pulled one seedling after another and then it was time for the weeds. These had taken root last year and many were now the size of dinner plates. Uprooting them took much effort, but because of the previous night’s heavy rain fall, the mulch released the roots more readily. Pulling the weeds was back breaking in itself, but that chore became more challenging as I worked through the area surrounded by prickly blackberry vines.
Despite my intent, the tomato seeds weren’t sown that morning. Instead, our Father had other more valuable lessons to teach. He explained… the garden represents the life of each individual. The seeds can’t be sewn to bear fruit until we clear off the debris from previous years. Like the vine, we have much pain, worry and concern of yesteryears which continue to cling onto us. Many of us fail to realize that although we attempt to move forward, we are sluggish because of the dead weight we continue to carry.
Didn’t Jesus come “to bring (us) life and have it to the full”? (John 10:10) Then why are we heavy laden with burdens? Didn’t Jesus say, “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS.…? (Matt 11:28-29) And yet, so many struggle! There must be some miscommunication along the way.
Over 2000 years ago, Jesus stepped down from Heaven and was born of woman. He willingly chose to be crucified and to die on the cross as the unblemished sacrificial Lamb of God in order to take away the sins of the world. On the 3rd day, through the power of the Holy Spirit, He rose again, overcoming eternal death which entered the world when man first chose to disobey the Father. This IS the Good News!
You’ve heard the Good News, haven’t you? Did you know that as you chose to believe, you were immediately transferred from the kingdom of darkness and lies of the devil into the Kingdom of God? With that choice, you were given a new identity, a new life and a new purpose! You no longer are a nobody, but you ARE a child of God! Together with Jesus, you are invited to call God, Father… your Papa! And as a child of God, you are given the power like no other, through the Holy Spirit, to obey and follow the will of God. Did you know that? Sadly, many don’t.
Run to Papa God! Tell Him about your heart aches and sorrows. He’s been waiting for you to share it with Him. He invites us to take off our yoke, together with all our grief and sorrows, and to leave them all at the foot of Jesus’ cross. He whispers, “Take up My yoke”… His teachings and His way of life and to learn from Him. He reminds us that He is “gentle and humble in heart” and when we turn to Him, “we will find rest for our souls.”
Do you remember the Laurel seedlings and the weeds I had pulled out? He reminded me that each could not be pulled out as a bunch, but each one required individual attention. Similarly, each problem that we have, be it big (mature weed) or small (seedling), needed His undivided attention. He then reminded me that the heavy rain that poured the night before were the tears of each one. As each one reaches rock bottom, we cry profusely and when we do, we are more willing to relinquish our pride and our self-reliance to him. He then said, “As a gardener, your desire is to pull out the root system of each weed in its entirety. But if you are the weed, your goal would to be to ensure that some roots would remain so that you would have a chance to grow again.” The enemy usually allows us just enough time with God to have our problems solved superficially. He then attempts to distract us away from the Father so that only the surface hurts are healed, but the root problems are still intact and capable of growing once again. The choice is ours. We can run the treadmill of a busy lifestyle but go no where OR we can spend time with God.
Jesus said, “The enemy comes to kill, steal and destroy. I have come to bring you life, and have it to the full.” John 10:10 Will you come and take the full life Jesus is offering you?
Melissa – April 26, 2016
p.s. – Proverbs 16: 9 “A man’s mind plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.”