I have been “nurturing” a piece of grass that does not belong to us. It sits between our wall and the road. Council property. Except it became a temporary “site store” when we had our driveway laid. Rubble piled high, deliveries dropped, used and abused, left looking forlorn. We laid some turf to replace the (redundant path of) paving slabs we lifted and removed. When all was done …
I watered. Gallons of water. On a daily basis. Just as a heat wave arrived. And as the watering and nurturing are restoring the grass – something odd.
The turfed stripe is bedding-in but looks fragile compared to the old-established grass.
I find myself wanting the turfed area to take on the weeds of the established area. Otherwise its health (ill-health) is subject to rain (too much / too little) – sun (ditto) – wear and tear (ditto).
“Gives a new take to those old verses you were taught, Paul … “
I was taught the weeds were non-believers. A threat. A temptation to be avoided. A lifestyle to be shed. An “of this world” that us believers no longer were. Believers are different. Separated. Pure. Of faith and religion. I was taught if God “pulled weeds” as we pull weeds – I might accidentally get “pulled” as well. And that is not good.
“Jesus told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away. When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared. “The owner’s servants came to him and said, ‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the weeds come from?’ “‘An enemy did this,’ he replied. “The servants asked him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’ “‘No,’ he answered, ‘because while you are pulling the weeds, you may uproot the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.’” Matthew 13: 24-30
And these verses might mean just that – they do talk of burning (and all that agricultural stuff we sophisticated city slickers take so literally).
But when those of faith (and/or religion) separate themselves – does that really make those of faith stronger? Because doesn’t living within “the walls of faith” means all is well when all is well? But …
When real living brings challenges, danger, threats, bounty and barren … when doubts creep in and faith is by sight only … when God is not “looking after His own” … when “prosperity” of wealth in spirit and/or possessions or in health and ill-health is not “the reward” for being a good Christian … How “strong” those of faith on their own ?
I look at this grass that is not mine, this grass I am tending and nurturing. I will not pull up the weeds and I look forward to the day when it becomes “rougher” and “tougher” … able to thrive without my constant attention … able to survive no matter what.
“I look forward to this grass being grass for all once again, Paul.”