Today, I uncovered more ground in my backyard. The ivy was thinned and stubborn roots revealed. Thorny and overgrown plants were trimmed back to get closer to the root of the ivy that veils the fence, the tree, the rock wall and so much of the yard.
I disturbed the worm community and felt for them as they seemed stunned by the light. As I was digging, pruning and pulling, I had to be mindful the level of ferocity I employed so that I didn’t go sailing backward once the stronghold gave way.
Each layer removed, was progress; but there was still growth that wanted to entangle my feet and shifting terrain that would have obliged me to take a spill. It was so easy to become distracted from my original goal of saving the tree from death by strangulation as I drifted from the tree to other areas of the slope. Focus! Refocus! I was reminded.
Distraction is a powerful tool! Speaking of tools, I did not have the “right” ones for most of the work I did today. My pruning shears broke at some point after being strained from being used to separate the fused stems of the ivy from the tree trunk. But I had more insight at that moment as at many points in today’s journey. He put in me, what I needed. It just had to be brought out and used.
Don’t get me wrong; at some point, I will buy other tools. I will need them. Today, however, I used my hands and what was in them and on them. My gloves minimized the wear and wounds to my hands as they warred to unveil the trunk. The pruning shears, and yes, even a hammer and flat blade screwdriver were agents of change to the landscape. How interesting it is that we often don’t know what He put into us, until it’s all we have to use while leaning on Him to focus it and effect change.
I find the ivy so pretty; but it’s a killer of trees and intertwines so deftly with all life springing from the ground. Don’t sin and our own fleshly ways seem beautiful and exciting, until, it’s nearly too late and much of the life has been choked out of us? It’s like a tumor that has finger-like shoots, that wrap around every organ of a person’s body until the body can’t fight it off. One of my cousins died of such a disease, rare in the natural realm, but sadly, not in the supernatural.
I leave you with this encouragement for today. Romans 12:1-2 says, “So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life – your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life – and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for Him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what He wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.” (The Message/MSG Bible)
Walk in blessings, My Friends!