This has been a hard, long, week. Filled with lots of emotional highs and lows. The biggest low being the loss of my husband’s grandfather.
I didn’t know him as long as others were blessed to, but I got the chance to experience a grandfather as an adult and that in itself was a special gift from God.
He wasn’t just my husband’s grandfather. He was my Grandpa Sterling.
Those who really know me know that my grandmothers meant the world to me. My dad’s mom passed away when I was in grade school. My mom’s mom passed when I was in undergrad (a year before I graduated).
Having a grandfather was a foreign experience for me. My dad’s dad passed away not long after I was born. I’m told I was the last grand-baby he held. I was named after he and my dad. (Francinia is my mom’s nod to Frank).
All my life, my dad told me how much his dad loved me. My dad frequently tells the story of how his dad held me for the first time and looked at me and told him and my mom that, “This ‘red baby’ is going to be something else.”
Among many things, that was always a driver for me and it pushed me to keep going because I knew my Grandpa believed in me and my strong-willed self from day one.
In the brief time that I knew my husband’s grandfather, I felt that same love and encouragement and support from him. That’s the thing about love and true relationships and bonds. They BUILD you up. They help you to GROW beyond what you can comprehend. Even when there are rough patches, the LOVE ENDURES.
Here lately, I’ve come to the realization that I’ve spent entirely too much time dealing with and allowing my emotions to be occupied with those who do not love or even care about me. Their words show it. Their actions (or lack thereof) show it.
Then, I was forced to ask myself. Why have I not weeded this out already?
I thought a bit further and realized, it’s not always about physically weeding out the negative people in our lives. It’s actually more important to weed out the impact of their negative actions (i.e, our reactions, our reactive thoughts, our reactive comments, etc.– especially when those reactions are negative).
I am doing this activity in the spiritual as well as in the natural. As a gardener, I know I need to select a good tool when it comes to weeding and pruning my garden beds. This week, I’ll be reviewing my new Titanium Pruning Shears By Haus & Garten which inspired this post.
I also know that I have to turn over my garden beds and do a continuous “refresh and reset” or the weeds and overgrowth will drown out all the new blooms and, instead of having something beautiful to look at, I will end up dealing with a disorganized mess.
The same can be said for our spiritual selves.
We have to push the rest button whenever negative thoughts start to cloud our mind. They’re like the weeds and overgrown shrubs in a garden that keep fresh, new flowers from growing.
Take time to renew your mind, DAILY. Take other extended periods where you refresh and/or intentionally release things for a few months or weeks at a time. I do this every year (several times a year) and it NEVER fails me.
My garden beds aren’t as beautiful as they once were, but I am committed to doing the work to getting them back into shape– and keeping them there. My peace isn’t where it once was, but I know God is doing a greater work and I’m committed to the process. #iPress
Understand that the “weeds” will always try to grow. It’s a natural part of the garden of life. The impact of allowing them to grow is that they will choke out the beautiful flowers and greenery that God wants to bloom in your life. Cutting out the weeds will take work– and it won’t be a one time work– but it is worth it.
My rose garden has the same potential today that it had before. I know something beautiful can bloom. The weeds are only temporary. Let’s get to work!
Philippians 4:8 (KJV) Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
Matthew 12:33-37 (NIV) “Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit. You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him. But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”