There is a plant in our house that was given to us as a housewarming present. It sits right next to our television, so eyes are constantly on it. At first, it was easily thriving and growing into something beautiful. Recently, however, only half of the plant appears to be in good health. Next to each leafy and green branch is a brown, crispy dead one. To be perfectly honest, it is starting to give me a complex about my gardening capabilities.
I have no idea what happened to it. My first instinct is to remove all of the wilted leaves, but fear of an empty hole keeps me from doing so. I can’t shake the notion that, perhaps, with a little more time, the wilted leaves will renew themselves and find life again. I could end up with a beautiful plant if I am just a little patient. For me, the possibility is worth the wait.
“Let both grow together until the harvest” – NIV
In Matthew, Jesus tells the parable of the weeds in chapter 13. Jesus was speaking of pulling weeds and harvesting wheat crops. Nascent wheat and nascent weeds look awfully similar at first glance. It is often quite difficult to tell the two apart. Jesus instructed the gardeners to let the weeds and wheat grow together until it is time for the harvest. The good and bad crops will be separated out later.
As Christians, do we have this mentality? For me, I find it almost second nature to want to separate out the good people from the bad. As my husband would say, if we can have something be perfect right now, why not do it now? For Jesus, however, there is something to the waiting process. Jesus knows the value of time. He wants every possible child to be a part of the harvest. If He separated us out now, which side would you be on?
How grateful are we that our Heavenly Father is a patient gardener?