i’ve been taking good care of my daisies. (there are still no blooms….so only i know they aspire to be daisies…well, and you)
i feel very fortunate to be located where i am, apartment wise. you see….first of all…my patio faces east. during a steamy texas summer, this seems ideal. plants get to enjoy a morning of sunlight….but by the time the temp has hit 100 and the sun is scorching down….my plants are nicely shaded. secondly, my patio also recedes into the building…and the roof provides an overhang that protects the plants hanging out on my patio ledge from drowning in any sudden downpours. (that is unless the rain is coming in sideways…but for the most part they are safe)
i’ve been watering them…and loving them….and that’s about the extent of my green thumb. i don’t really know what i’m doing…or what to be looking out for…all i know…is that someday they will become flowers.
well, out of nowhere…they really started to shoot up. i was a proud mama. i continued watering them and telling them how proud i was (anyone who knows me…knows i literally talked to them and squealed in delight at their progress…as it doesn’t take much to excite me and most inanimate objects develop personalities in my mind)….my subconscious noticed that one part of the plant was growing faster, stronger and differently than the rest….but i just went on being so proud of how well they were doing…when all the neighbor flower pots were dry, brown and dying.
B came over for a baking night a while back and exclaimed that she wanted to go out and check on my daisies (since i have been bragging on em). when she came back inside….she said…now, don’t be offended. (pause) i think you have a weed.
of course…the moment she said it, i knew exactly what she was talking about. that part of my plant that was growing the best…shooting up over the rest of the leaves….the part of my plant that i was extra proud of…..was a weed. how did i miss it?! how could i be so naive? :) together we marched out to the patio and pulled that sucker out by the roots….being extra careful not to harm the rest of the plant. oh how sad the daisies looked now….not quite so tall and strong….some crippled over (since the weed had been taking over most of the pot) arg!
i got to thinking about how i needed B to point out the flaw in my plant because i had become so proud that it made me completely oblivious. i feel like this goes hand in hand with why we need true-blue friends and community. sometimes we let our focus become so centered on one thing….that we look over the part of our life that needs to be weeded. or, if we’re in really bad shape, we’re actually proud of that part that needs to be removed….and don’t see the damage it’s really doing to the rest of our selves. by beaming over the growth of a weed….i was ignorantly risking the growth of the actual plant and setting myself up for the disappointment of spending all my time and energy bringing a worthless prickly-leaved weed to life…which was in no way what i set out to accomplish.
weeds will pop up everywhere…we are far from perfect. we’ll head down paths that won’t bring us joy and we’ll settle for the momentary over the eternal….but what i appreciate about the B’s in my life…is that i rarely head too far without being questioned. sometimes it’s easier to recognize the weeds and sometimes it takes what seems like forever to surrender, with much resentment and sometime regrettable responses. however, along the way it seems to get easier….to just stop….shake your head….admit what’s there….pull it out at the roots…and do your best to mend and grow the parts that were being crushed down by that silly prickly plant.
i’m so thankful to have honest friends in my life…friends who aren’t too scared to broach the tough topics (gently). you know someone really cares about you, when they are willing to risk an uncomfortable situation, defenses flying high….or even an argument to be loving enough to help you weed out your life so that you can grow stronger and more beautifully. on top of being thankful for true friends, i need to constantly be praying for a discerning and humble heart…one that is receptive to counsel and correction…quick to listen…slow to anger.
James 1:19-21 My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.