This has been a hot Texas summer. Even by Texas standards this has been a scorching July. How hot has it been? Thank you for asking.
- The birds have to use potholders to pull worms out of the ground
- Farmers are feeding their chickens crushed ice to keep them from laying hard-boiled eggs.
- The cows are giving evaporated milk.
- The trees are whistling for the dogs.
- You learn that a seat belt makes a pretty good branding iron.
- You discover that in July it takes only 1 finger to drive your car.
(Note to environmental hall monitors…I am not making light of global warming. Please work with me on the analogy to follow. I wrote about how it is not easy to be green and evangelical in an earlier post.)
We are struggling to keep our lawn alive while trying to be good citizens and obeying the water conservation guidelines. Some flowers planted by our entry way have lost the battle and died. Others struggle to hang on even though we try to give them the water they need to survive. But right in the midst of the brown grass and dead flowers there are weeds springing up in healthy and green defiance of the struggle around them. And it occured to me that this is a metaphor for my Christian journey. The weeds in my life grow easily and without thought. They require no intellectual or spiritual nourishment. They just pop up.
Weeds in the yard need no care or attention. They grow in a crack in the driveway or in the middle of dead flowers. In any condition or type of soil the weeds will thrive. It takes effort to keep the weeds out…not to grow them. It requires a conscious and consistent approach to keep a yard and garden weed free.
The same principle applies to my journey with Jesus. I have weeds that grow easily in my Christian life. These weeds inhibit the growth of the fruit that Jesus tells me that I should be producing. Weeds of laziness, lack of discipline, selfishness, and pride grow quickly and choke out the fruit that I know I should be displaying. Satan would have you think that weeds do not grow in your soul’s garden when the other fruit is growing nicely. That is a lie. They can and those spiritual weeds can happen overnight. A lack of awareness of that fact will cause the weeds to creep in and eventually destroy or at least damage the fruit.
Here is the uncomfortable bottom line. If I am a Christian living in a right relationship with Jesus then others will be able to inspect my life and find fruit.
In the Gospel of John Christ says that “my true disciples bear much fruit.” Hmmm. I don’t really see a way around that. It is easy to grow weeds and hard to produce fruit. But no matter how hot or dry or difficult the soil might be the Lord is saying I will still bear fruit if I am His disciple.
That is all I have for today because I have to go look in the mirror. I think I will find the key to a reduced crop of fruit production staring back at me.