I simply do not understand weeds. Nothing is growing anywhere in Campbelltown at the moment due to the lack of rain – except the weeds! And at the Rectory they are prolific and amazing. The colours and designs are an incredible array of tragic beauty.
The weeds are growing through tiny gaps in the concrete and bricks. The weeds are growing where the ground is so hard you need a pneumatic drill to get through it. The weeds are growing next to plants that are dying. The weeds are growing in places I sprayed last year and thought nothing would ever grow there again! They are insidious and annoying and I will have to spend a lot of time getting rid of them! Aargh
But I ought not complain as I look out my back windows, but rather give thanks for a reminder about the world we live in.
In Matthew 13, Jesus teaches a parable about weeds. A farmer plants out his field with wheat but weeds grow up and sprout in their midst. The servants suggest pulling them all up but the farmer says to wait and divide them at the harvest time lest they damage the wheat. So the weeds and the wheat exist together in the field.
Jesus explains the parable saying;
“The field is the world, and the good seed stands for the people of the kingdom. The weeds are the people of the evil one and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels.” (Matthew 13:38-39)
Jesus point is clear. In this world in which we live, there will be people who follow the Kingdom of God and people who follow the Kingdom of darkness. The consistent challenge for those who will live following and being a part of the Kingdom of God is that evil will surround us throughout all our lives. There will be temptation on every side, all the time. There will be the constant voices of those who do not regard Jesus as anything more than an idea telling you to turn from him. There will be a constant stream of such things that look healthy and delightful (like so many weeds do) until the end of time when Jesus comes again to judge the living and the dead.
This helps shape our expectations of life. Life will not be easy just because you follow Jesus. Life will be a constant battle between the Kingdom of God and the Kingdom of darkness that wants to draw you into its shadows. We need to stand firm and keep trusting Jesus. Where else have we to go. Jesus himself finishes the parable saying, Whoever has ears, let them hear!
May we be those who see our weeds and hear the reminder that life till Jesus comes is going to be a challenge; so keep walking, trusting Jesus and he will strengthen you to persevere.
PS. Jesus parable does not count as horticultural advice. Go and weed your garden!