Rev. Zacek

Importance of spring cleaning

Published May 19, 2018 at 4:00pm

A well cared for garden is soothing.  We enjoy its beauty and value the calm it provides.  In Central New York we tend to think of vegetables as the primary function of a garden, however other cultures have different perspectives on the word “garden.”  

The British consider their entire outdoor property to be their “garden.” They seem to appreciate beauty and function as if beauty is a function in and of itself. Perhaps we have something to learn as we consider the garden of our souls?

This spring I found myself pulling up weeds in a garden at our church facility. The size of some amazed me. It struck me that these weeds had been growing for a while underneath the ground.  Have you ever noticed weeds springing up in your own life?

It could be that what has now come through the surface has been growing for quite some time.  These kind of weeds require a deep intervention for the other plants to flourish.  

In the scripture we see Jesus use plants and soil to teach about the kingdom of God.  In Mark’s gospel we read one account of the parable of the sower and the seed. A man goes out to sow seed and it falls on different types of soils.

The seed represents God’s word and the soil the different conditions of people who hear it. The seed has the potential to produce an abundant harvest.  God’s word is the same way in our lives. Its seed has the potential to produce an abundant harvest of righteousness in our lives.  

One thing that robs us of that is revealed in this parable:  

“Still [people], like seed sown among thorns, hear the word;but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful.” - Mark 4:18-19

Just like the weeds in our garden can choke out the beauty and fruitfulness of the plants so can these areas in our lives.  

Simple things can have such significant impact on the course and direction of our lives. The worries of life. The deceitfulness of wealth, and the desires for other things.  A casual reading of this passage may think that we need to empty ourselves of all desire, but in Christ we find something quite different. The word desire itself comes from the Latin meaning “of the Father.”  

Jesus came to reveal God as Father and that we too can know God in this manner.  This was and continues to be an amazing revelation! Paul writes to the Romans that Jesus was the “firstborn among many brothers and sisters.”  When we see Jesus for who he is, His beauty captures our desires.

Maybe the weeds in our soul are God’s way of pointing us to His deep love expressed to us in the kindness of Christ Jesus?