Looking out my window today I’m pondering the fact that soon I will need to cut the grass. I always like putting the first cut off as long as I can. After all, once you cut the lawn for the first time in the season, you’re then committed for the rest of the year! As the old saying goes – April showers bring May flowers. The showers of last month, made way for green grass and garden beds coming to life. Around our house – at least for a while – the gardens will look lovely as the perennials come up. However, they quickly die off and then our garden becomes the proverbial “weed garden”.
I remember one particular time a number of years ago I decided to take the garden weeding issue into my own hands. The garden at the side of our house was very overgrown. At the time I was a full time student and we were living in Kentucky. I just did not have time to keep up with any kind of gardening around the house. It was all I could do to keep up with the grass! A number of weeks went by and since we also had two young children, my wife didn’t have much time for gardening. That’s when I came up with – what I thought – was an ingenuous idea!
One Saturday afternoon as my wife was out shopping, I made plans to cut the lawn. It was a warm summer day. The grass was long and the garden was tall with weeds. I had no idea what was in the garden since the weeds had long overtaken many of the plants. I started out just cutting the grass and carefully cutting around the edge of the garden. Then, full of inspiration, I decided to simply push the lawnmower right through the garden! As the lawnmower chugged and choked on the weeds and flowers, I had a huge smile on my face. When I was done, it was with a sense of pride that I pushed out my chest thinking out loud, “Now that looks MUCH better!” At the time, all was well with the world. That of course changed once my wife pulled into the driveway.
As she pulled into the driveway, I was sitting on the front porch sipping a Diet Coke. Fully expecting to hear a “Well done”, the mood of the day suddenly changed. First she simply sat in the car with a stunned look on her face. No smile, no excitement, just a cold stare. First starring at the garden plot, then glaring at me! All was not well in the Jeffrey household as she suddenly jumped from the car screaming, “My roses! You cut down all my roses!” Not exactly the response I was expecting. While I found myself in the garden-dog-house for the rest of the summer, an amazing thing happened the following year. The very same rose bushes that were left as mere stumps and stubble in the ground, grew and bloomed into incredible flowers once again.
Life is like that too. Sometimes we feel like our lives have been cut right down to the stump. Somewhere along the line weeds of discouragement, regret, despair and many more emotions creep in and choke out the roses in our lives. The Good News is this! When Job lost everything he received a promise from God – “There is hope for a tree. If it is cut down, it will sprout again, and its new shoots will not fail. Its roots may grow old in the ground, but at the scent of water it will bud and put forth shoots like a plant” (Job 14:7-9). Jesus declared He is the “living water” and whoever comes to Him will “thirst no more” (John 4:14). Are you feeling like a dried up stump? Allow the water Jesus offers to come into your life and you will once again find “hope and new shoots will not fail”.
Looking Out My Window is a regular column in the Northumberland Today newspaper located in Cobourg, Ontario, Canada.