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  • A Parable

    May 6, 2008

    Weeds have taken over my lawn. 

     

    If you were passing by my house, you wouldn’t notice the weeds. I keep my lawn mowed and edged and tidy, so from outward appearances everything looks fine and dandy, even nice. Sort of.  But if you took the time to really look at the lawn you would see that it has been sorely neglected. 

     

    My excuse is that since becoming a mother, it has been hard to keep up with the gardening.  There are so many other things screaming for my attention.  And the lawn, it doesn’t scream. It just waits for me, season after season, while the weeds quietly take over.

     

    Sometimes when I went out to get the newspaper, I would notice that along the driveway, a weed had popped up.  Maybe if it were convenient, I would bend down and pull it out.  But mostly, I just said, “It’s just one weed. What can it hurt?” and keep going on my merry way.  Eventually I noticed that one or two weeds had become a lot of weeds and I said, “I really must do something about those weeds. Soon, I’m going to take steps to get rid of those weeds and make my lawn a thing of beauty for all to gaze upon.”  And then another season would pass.

     

    I didn’t realize how bad it had gotten until the other day when I was out in the yard kicking the soccer ball with Sean.  One weed was particularly bothering me and I bent down to pluck it out.  Upon closer inspection, I saw that my lawn was really just weeds disguised as grass. I tugged hard, but the weed wouldn’t yield.  I tugged harder and harder.  My hands hurt and my face turned red.  Finally it broke off at the base and knocked me on my tail. It was still firmly rooted.

     

    I sat down right then and there and began pulling the weeds away so what little grass was left could get some light.  After about an hour, I looked up and I hadn’t even made a dent.  I was never going to be able to get rid of all those weeds by myself.  I was daunted. I was discouraged.  I thought, why even bother?

     

    Over time, the weeds had anchored into the bedrock and spread their long and spiny fingers far and wide choking out all the goodness and beauty.  How could I have let this happen?

     

    If I ever hope to restore my lawn to it’s former beauty, I’m going to have to get some help.

    37 Comments »

    1. Moriah @ Please Pass the Salt says:

      Isn’t that the truth for all of life?

      May 6th, 2008 at 1:02 am

    2. Joanna says:

      Please tell me there is a part two or six of this parable.

      In a world full of weeds it makes me smile knowing there is one less to gaze upon.

      May 6th, 2008 at 1:54 am

    3. Renna says:

      Those weeds are just like sin in our lives. We entertain ‘too long’ the idea of doing something we know we shouldn’t. As we entertain the thought, we open the door wider to the enemy of our soul. Before we know it, that thing which began as only a thought has become a sin, and is rooted deep in our soul. The longer we let them grow freely, the harder, and more painful, it is to extract them.

      May 6th, 2008 at 1:59 am

    4. Karen (Simply A Musing Blog) says:

      So good to know that we don’t have to pick up a phone for those spiritual weeds, huh? :)

      May 6th, 2008 at 2:36 am

    5. Mamacita says:

      Beautiful post and so true. :)

      May 6th, 2008 at 2:42 am

    6. Photochick (Amanda) says:

      Don’t worry sweetheart! The grass may seem greener & the laundry may smell cleaner on the other side, but remember – they’re probably thinking the exact same things about you! Especially with that sweet little boy of yours – you lucky gal you! They’re all probably thinking, “Why can’t my kiddo be that cute/sweet/fun/cool?!”

      Much love as always!! Take care and God Bless

      *Weeds are God’s way of showing us as many of His wonderful creations as possible!*

      May 6th, 2008 at 3:17 am

    7. Adam Finch says:

      My mom just gave me and my brother summer jobs, everything she didn’t want to do! Weeding, dusting, sweeping the house, mowing the lawn. According to my mother, as long as you have kids you should never have to worry about jobs like that!…but in all seriousness (though, that was my moms strategy) your words ring very true. I am attempting to apply that to my relationship. Talking about things when I’m upset so the roots of the weeds don’t get too deep.

      Thanks for sharing your words, I’m glad I stumbled upon them.

      Adam

      http://adam-finch.eachday.com

      May 6th, 2008 at 3:21 am

    8. mamaspeak says:

      You know….I don’t believe anyone on their deathbed wished they’d spent more time tending their lawn (or cleaning house). However, a good many people look back on their lives and wish they’d spent more time w/their children. You will not have to worry about that. And for that, you should be thankful. ;-)

      PS–if it’s bugging you that much hire a gardner (ours is Armando & he came w/the house,) I big pink puffy heart him for keeping my yards look so nice & we just play in them.

      Also, weeds are plants you don’t want. Decide you want them & you’re dialed. If anyone says anything tell them you’ve started a native plant garden to conserve water. ;-)

      May 6th, 2008 at 3:34 am

    9. Brigitte says:

      I forgot the “Parable” part when I read it . . so I guess I won’t remind you that a lawn that’s secretly made up of weeds is currently the fashionable, “green” (and low-maintentance) thing to do! ;-)

      Maybe THAT could be a parable for all the folks who tell you not to sweat it when you really want to do the right thing.

      May 6th, 2008 at 4:23 am

    10. Heidi says:

      I was going to say exactly what mamaspeak said–I doubt you’d get to the end of your life and regret the time you didn’t spend weeding. However, I appreciate the lesson: that it’s easy to ignore “one little sin” in our lives until it becomes multiple and then starts taking over. Well-constructed.

      May 6th, 2008 at 5:48 am

    11. Nikolaj says:

      A parable indeed :)

      Well written!

      May 6th, 2008 at 5:59 am

    12. Jeanne A says:

      Reminds me of the Rumor Weed by the Veggie Tales. And that reminds me of when my kids were little. Seems like just yesterday!

      My yard is full of moss—at least it’s green. An my house has been taken over by clutter — and I need help with both!

      May 6th, 2008 at 7:08 am

    13. Donna W says:

      Right on! (Write on, too.)

      May 6th, 2008 at 7:51 am

    14. Tonggu Momma says:

      This is exactly how I feel at the moment.

      May 6th, 2008 at 7:55 am

    15. Tracy @ My Cup Runneth Over says:

      What a great parable. How striking the parallel between those pesky, blasted weeds and sin. So easy to ignore just a little one here or there, but if let go long enough, they can take over the landscape! Great food for thought! = )
      Blessings,
      Tracy

      May 6th, 2008 at 8:05 am

    16. Jenny 867-5309 says:

      My pastor spoke on the seed and sower parable this past Sunday and convicted the hoo-hoo out of me. You post got me too, so apparently I have some more hoo-hoo to get rid of!

      May 6th, 2008 at 9:13 am

    17. Linda says:

      Great post AM!

      May 6th, 2008 at 9:19 am

    18. Sarah says:

      I love how you set this up like a parable! My husband would really get a kick out of this, becuase he owns a turf care company. I’ll have to email it over to him.

      May 6th, 2008 at 9:31 am

    19. Amy Beth @ Ministry So Fabulous! says:

      Excellent.

      May 6th, 2008 at 10:01 am

    20. Antique Mommy says:

      Sarah, maybe you could send him over because, seriously, we’ve got weeds and they’ve gobbled up my once beautiful St. Augustine.

      May 6th, 2008 at 10:01 am

    21. Shalee says:

      I really enjoyed these words of wisdom, AM. You totally nailed me on the head.

      May 6th, 2008 at 10:44 am

    22. Jill S. says:

      I’ve had weeds for grass since my kids were born . . .

      May 6th, 2008 at 10:46 am

    23. Erin says:

      I’m strongly of the opinion when it comes to my lawn if anything grows it’s a friend of mine. My daughter said the other day, “Remember all those dandelions last year mom?” And I said, “Yep, they’ll be back in two shakes of tail, dear, and there will be more of them this year.” She was excited at the notion, and me less so, but they’re only here for a while and at least something is growing.

      May 6th, 2008 at 11:32 am

    24. zoom says:

      Without a big dose of God’s grace I could never attempt to get rid of all of the weeds in my garden.

      May 6th, 2008 at 12:04 pm

    25. Kelly @ Love Well says:

      Funny thing is, if you start pulling weeds, your yard is going to look like a mess for a while. If you have Pharisees for neighbors, they won’t like that.

      May 6th, 2008 at 12:38 pm

    26. MotherPie says:

      Well, for one thing, dandelion leaves are very nutritious. The French settlers brought them over as a vegetable. So you can pick your dinner greens if you don’t use chemicals. Your son might learn more from this and be healthier in the process.

      Growing food in the gardens is a good lesson to teach. I’m covering some of this things in upcoming posts and have links to some of the new landscaping trends in 2008, which is MOSS!!!! We’re getting tired of sustaining these lawns. Time for a change.

      May 6th, 2008 at 12:40 pm

    27. Elizabeth says:

      I hear moss makes an acceptable “lawn” with NO upkeep!

      May 6th, 2008 at 3:10 pm

    28. Angela says:

      Beautiful parable

      May 6th, 2008 at 3:16 pm

    29. Happy Geek says:

      What a great parable.
      Thanks for making me think this morning.

      May 6th, 2008 at 3:50 pm

    30. Susan J. says:

      Excellent job.

      May 6th, 2008 at 5:03 pm

    31. Sue Cramer says:

      I think about the metaphor of “weeds in life” everytime I work in the yard.
      Especially when I pull at a weed only to get the top of it and leave the roots intact. So basically, I prune my weeds in order to help them come back fuller and stronger.

      May 6th, 2008 at 8:53 pm

    32. Rocks In My Dryer says:

      Last year we finally caved and hired a lawn service. No more weeds! Excellent.

      May 6th, 2008 at 11:49 pm

    33. Sue says:

      OH, now I get it. We’re talking about SIN.

      I thought this was about my gray hair.

      May 7th, 2008 at 2:37 am

    34. Antique Mommy says:

      Although not the most spectacular post I’ve ever written, to me it has been one of the most interesting in terms of the varied response in comments. To some readers, this post was about sin, or negative influences. To others it was about time and the value of spending time pulling weeds. And other thought it was about weeds.

      I guess it was about all of those things. Maybe that is what a parable is supposed to do — speak to the individual reader.

      May 7th, 2008 at 8:44 am

    35. Nett says:

      AM,
      I just reread this post this morning after the title caused me to rethink it. I read it yesterday, but did not take the time to ponder. Coincidentally, I decided to comment to you and notice that you’ve left a comment of your own describing how you’ve received such varying responses. Let me share mine with you.
      To me, the parable is about our health. I pray that it is not about your own health. The weeds, to me quite specifically, represent a cancer or maybe another disease, that can sort of sneak up on us and if we don’t choose to do something about it right away, can choke out nearly all of our “good grass”. Your point about the roots in the bedrock represents (at least to me…) how cancer can finally settle into our bones.

      Quite specific ideas, I know. But those were my thoughts. Again, I hope all it “well” in your life:)
      Fondly,
      Janette

      May 7th, 2008 at 10:10 am

    36. qfmama says:

      What a great reminder that we need to be ever diligent… in our yards, and in our lives. What seems like a little thing can, after a time, take over…

      ~kjl

      May 8th, 2008 at 1:28 am

    37. Jolyn says:

      Ooh, just trying to catch up on your posts and I just LOVED this parable. The tricky part is asking for help, isn’t it?

      May 8th, 2008 at 10:24 am

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