Weeding the Garden


Weeks of high temperatures over 90 and high pollen count kept me inside, gazing at my flower garden through my dining room picture window.

The Hibiscus bed is overgrown with weeds and asparagus. The 6-foot-tall plant growing beside my bright red hibiscus in the west flower bed looks nice but is really a weed that got away from me.

Hibiscus thrive in hot weather, as apparently this weed does, so they have kept pace with each other in height, all summer long. The ground was so hard from the drought and heat, and the weeds so tough and well-rooted, that I couldn’t pull them out.

Pulling the weeds brings up the adjacent plants and the soil around them, so the bed will need to be worked, the soil broken up, and the perennial plants that the weeds killed will have to be replaced.

I should have put on a doctor’s mask for allergies, got down on my knees on the garden kneeler, and pulled those weeds when they were small and easy to pull. The weather was nicer in the spring, and I could have enjoyed working in the garden before the heat set in. If I had only pulled the weeds when they were small.

Sin in like that. If I had taken the time to get down on my knees and pulled out the “little weeds,” those little aggravating sins, I wouldn’t have to contend with the 6-foot-tall weeds in my heart now.

“Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us…” Hebrews 12:1 NKJV

What is the little sin that has wrapped itself around you? Is it just a tiny cute plant? “Oh, it’s nothing. I can quit that any time.” Is it crowding out the good plants in your heart? Does it take the place of your Bible study time? Or your prayer time? Are you skipping church and fellowship of believers? Is it taking over your life?

Now while it is small, pull it out. Sure, it might hurt a little. It might pull out a little dirt with it, but I promise, it won’t hurt anything like it will if you let it grow and take over the garden of your life.

Rhino in my Heart

When I worked for the phone company, I went to school at least once a year, usually in Dallas. Then in 1995 I joined a traveling crew, going all over the state. I left on Monday morning and returned on Thursday night. As a result I got good at packing for my trips–good enough, I used to say, that I could pack in my sleep.

Last night I dreamed of finding a bulging suitcase from one of my trips. It was full of neatly pressed blue jeans and work blouses. Mixed in were snack cakes that were spoiled and moldy, melted chocolate, and gooey unrecognizable mildewed
stuff all over everything.

Then a friendly rhinoceros that seemed to be a pet rushed down the hall, and I made my way behind him to let him go out to potty, but it was obvious from the condition of the living room that he wasn’t very well potty-trained.

All of us have forgotten baggage and wild dangerous pets living in our hearts. Keeping things inside allows them to spoil, mold, mildew, melt, and get all over our hearts. Holding onto junk from the past ruins the good stuff in our lives
today. These things are like wild animals that defile us, ruin our relationships, and stink up everything around us.

Peter tells us in I Peter 5:7-8 in the Amplified version, “Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all,] on Him (Jesus), for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully…be vigilant and cautious at all times; for that enemy of yours, the devil, roams around like a lion roaring, seeking someone to seize upon and devour.”

Even Christians hold onto old grudges, dislikes, anger, hatred, or prejudices that defile our hearts, leaving us prey to the enemy of our souls, the devil.

Satan loves to sneak around looking for those who have hidden baggage that he can take advantage of. He wants to destroy our lives, our homes, our families, our churches, and all our relationships.

We need to examine our hearts and ask the Lord to reveal to us those things in our hearts so we give them to Him, because He lovingly cares for and watches over us.

The Tattoo of God

When I want to remember something important, I write it on my hand. If I don’t do that to remind myself, I might not remember for days. The palm of your hand is an important part of you. It is always right there in front of you, where it can be seen. You use your hands for everything, so if something is written on your hand, it would be hard to forget.

God has a tattoo of you on the palm of His hands.

“See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands.” Isaiah 49:16 N IV

You are important to God. He wants to constantly be reminded of you. Every time He stretches out His hand to do something, He sees you. What a comfort! If God be for us, who can be against us? The very one who gave His only begotten Son thinks about you every time He looks at the palm of His hand.

Sometimes it might seem like you are all alone in the world, but Jesus will never leave you. You may have lost your last friend, but you have a friend that sticks closer than a brother. Jesus Himself said, “I will never leave you, nor forsake you. I will go with you even to the end of the world.” I am never alone. He has promised never to leave me.

It is a permanent reminder to God since it is engraved, tattooed onto God’s hand. He couldn’t even forget me if He tried.

10 Ways to Look Younger


1. Put a smile on your face. Proverbs 15:13, “A happy heart makes the face cheerful.”

2. Treat everyone equally well. James 2:9 nkjv “If you show partiality, you commit sin.”

3. Watch what you say. Ephesians 3:29 “Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth.”

4. Look everyone in the eye and have a firm handshake. Keep your word. A deal is a deal. You can’t buy integrity. Proverbs 19:1, “Better is the poor who walks in his integrity than one who is perverse in his lips and is a fool.”

5. Give a lot of hugs and kisses. II Corinthians 13:12 “Greet one another with a holy kiss.”

6. Act loving to everyone. Ephesians 5:1-2, “Therefore be imitators of God as dear children and walk in love.”

7. Quit worrying about everything. Philippians 4:6 niv, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”

8. Stop thinking about the bad things that are happening in the world, and start thinking about good things. Philippians 4:8, “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”

9. Practice contentment with what you have. Paul said in Philippians 4:11-12, “I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content. I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.”

10. Recognize that you can’t do any of these things consistently without Jesus Christ as your Savior. Paul said, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Phil. 4:13.

Your body is going to grow older, but your spirit, the real you on the inside, is young and beautiful. The more you live the life of love, the younger you will look until you will be young enough for God to call you to your heavenly home.