Needing Weeding

My mother in law is not the avid gardener she used to be. Things are beginning to ache and break now. Her back is bent and her knees are unstable. Getting down might just mean not being able to get back up. So her garden is looking forlorn. It is screaming out for a weeding. So with an old hand trowel and a healthy measure of resolve and determination, I set about to restore what is neglected. To make happen what could be.

Crouched down on a small stool I begin to transform what is a disheveled and long forgotten mess into something very different. Underneath the top layer of leaves and grass clippings, the soil is rich, and full of life. Bug and beetle life. Before long, three pied butcher-birds are boldly helping themselves to mid-morning brunch. They are not intimidated by my presence. Instead, they seem to revel in my company, coming oh so delightfully close.

With a good two hours sweat and exertion behind me, the weeds have been removed, and in its place is a garden bed begging for a colorful display of pansies and petunias. What was once nothing much to look at has been restored into a rich loamy bed of moist soil waiting to nurture a flourishing flower garden.

Beauty is never too far away from mess. In fact, it takes just a step of diligence and intention to move from one space to the other. Mess can be transformed into beauty if we have the will to make it happen. And the vision. We need that. To imagine what could become of the mess we live in. Without a vision of beauty nothing will change. Beauty is not mess. But beauty can come from mess. If we really want it.

What is crying out for transformation in our life just now? What is needing a weeding? Because it’s the weeds of our life that choke all the beauty waiting to be brought out. It takes intention, it takes diligence and it takes perseverance, but underneath every weedy garden there is something very special waiting to emerge. Perhaps the weeds are doubt and fear that need removing. In its place will thrive faith and hope. Or anger and unforgiveness may be the weeds that are choking us right now. When tended to we may discover joy and forgiveness. Weeds can be stubborn clinging onto the soil, unwilling to yield. We may have to work at removing them over and over again, until they give way. And it’s a messy process. Expect to feel pain when something harmful has to be given up. But it’s worth the work, worth the wait.

What can you envision about your own life? What is Love inviting you to do or become? Can you imagine new ways of growing and flourishing? What is the beauty you would like to see emerge in your own life? Mess can become something beautiful. It’s up to you.

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