My part of the yard work usually involves cutting the grass and edging the lawn. But Heidi is the gardener. She plans the flowers and plants them each year. My job at this point is pretty basic…pull the weeds. Yet I don’t mind. There is the satisfaction of tugging and twisting and watching it all come out. But then there are those weeds that don’t cooperate. I pull…and pull…and then the familiar pop. I am left with the visible part of the weed in my hand. But the root tenaciously held. Another weed will be returning. And I’ll be pulling right there again.
There are places in our hearts where we pull at the weeds, the clutter, the sins, the bad habits. We pull and pull…something may change. But it ends up being more visible, more surface. The dark, unknown where we can’t see remains. The root tenaciously holds. And another weed sprouts back. As an example, for years I have struggled with being jealous of others. It could be their gifts, personality, talents, life situation. I have pulled…and pulled only to have the weed grow back in another place.
But recently God turned on the light. I could see the dark, unknown. I could see the root. It happened when I came across this: “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.” (Col. 3:23) All of my jealousy was rooted in a lack of feeling affirmed. All of the gifts that I saw in others seemed to be tickets to that affirmation, whether it was fame as a writer or high-fives as an athlete or applause as a musician. I always believed that if I had what they had, I could get what I needed. But I never quite knew what that was. All of a sudden I saw. It was the affirmation of the Lord. It was the applause of the Father. And I could have that anytime I wanted. I don’t have to write or teach or coach or speak or counsel, compulsively looking for this from others. I can do it before his eyes. I felt that old root move, loosen, begin to dislodge. It was beautiful.
Important announcement: Starting with the next blog on Thursday, I will be changing my user name to make easier to type in: wordsfromcoachd. Coach D is what students often call me at the Academy, and it will be a lot easier to spell! Use wordsfromcoachd.wordpress to get back here. You may have to resubscribe if you already are now. Sorry for the confusion, but long-term this will be better.