Pretty Little Thieves

“When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father.”
‭‭John‬ ‭15:8‬ ‭

Ah, strawberries.

There’s nothing like walking out to the garden and picking a pailful of juicy, sun warmed berries and literally enjoying the fruits of my labour. It’s one of the lovely perks of having a big strawberry patch.

And labour it is.

All because of my decision to let something pretty live.

Let me explain.

Last year while picking and tending to my strawberry patch, I noticed a few wee cheddar pink seedlings here and there.

No biggie. They are cute and tiny and will bloom pink and it will not harm anything. Live and let live.

Right?

Yeah. That’s what I thought, too.

Nuh-uh.

These pretty little pink innocent blossoms didn’t stay little and innocent. Unbeknownst to me, they were coming up with a game plan to take over the world.

Well, ok, they didn’t manage world domination. But close enough!

They achieved Operation Strawberry Patch, which in my yard amounts to the same thing.

And still, I was clueless to the thieves. They operated like Navy Seals – silent and deadly.

Fast forward to this spring.

I was inspecting my strawberry patch. I had noticed a conspicuous lack of strawberry plants.

Odd.

We’ve had a dry fall and a dry spring. I watered. I waited.

Pretty thin. Rather like an aging scalp.

I needed a closer look.

And there it was.

Those wee plants from the season before had joined forces to form a thick impermeable mat which, when beneath the previous year’s foliage, couldn’t bother the plants. Now, it was keeping the crowns beneath them from growing through.

Ugh.

Pretty little thieves.

And a pretty big job ahead of me to fix my error in judgement.

Ouch.

Isn’t that just like life?

Not everything that robs us of fruit is ugly upfront. Not every decision stinks of decay and death.

At least at first.

No, things sneak in like a pretty, innocent plant. No biggie. Just showed up mysteriously and it a lot easier to just do nothing then to go after it and dig it out.

We reason that it is a small lie, a wee bit of gossip, just a taste of something that appeals to the senses – and whammy.

World domination.

Well, if not exactly world domination, a pretty little thief that can rob our potential. It’s not always the big obvious ploys of the enemy that take us down. No, those are obvious. Most of us are not exactly tempted to join a murderous gang or mule drugs across the border.

But spread that rumour? Tell that story that makes your colleague that did you wrong look bad? Take the easy way out? Avoid, deny, hide from a hard truth?

Those ‘little’ pink plants can choke out a lot of beauty if they are allowed to grow unchecked.

And oh, mama, have I learned this week that digging a big woven mat out is a lot harder than pouncing on a few wee plants when they were just barely rooted…

I want the strawberries.

And I want to produce ‘much fruit’, to the glory of God.

Be aware of the little problems before they take root with me?

Father, it’s those ‘innocent’ looking temptations that can really sidetrack us and steal a lot of our potential. Remind us to take careful stock of the small decisions we make. Keep us focused on dong Your will and building Your kingdom so that we continue to bless Your heart with our good life choices. Amen.

Published by melodylowes

I am actually a bit of a mess. But in the mess, I’m finding security in knowing I am chosen, I am forgiven, and I matter. After uncovering a history of abuse in my past, I have done a lot of healing - and writing is one way I can invite you deeper into your own healing journey! I write devotionals about the complicated thing called life at growing-in-grace.ca, and my poetry is stashed at melodylowes.com. Pull up a chair and a coffee or tea and let's grow together!

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