I went by the field of the slothful, and by the vineyard of the man void of understanding; And, lo, it was all grown over with thorns, and nettles had covered the face thereof, and the stone wall thereof was broken down” Proverbs 24:30-31.
If you love flowers, you must hate weeds.
My mother-in-law has an amazing green thumb! She loves gardening and is very good at it. She has an array of flowers, bushes, fruit trees, and herbs in her yard and garden. She is constantly pruning, fertilizing, and weeding her garden. It takes a lot of love, attention, and labor to keep the garden healthy and luscious.
It is a lot like that in a family. Every day you will battle the “weeds” that grow in and around your home. It is amazing how much joy your children can bring as they blossom, but it is unfortunate how much grief can be caused by “weeds” that grow and constrain the health and joy of your family. The work can wear you down if you are not careful. What do you do about weeds in your home?
The best prevention is simply never to let the weeds sprout—that means paying attention to the environment and having a close guard on your home. In a garden, mulch and weed killer are used to protect the soil from contamination. Spread a little mulch about the children; protect the atmosphere around them at all costs. Is what your family doing God-honoring? Is it positive? We may need to watch for harmful atmospheres and relationships like an eagle. Watch for relationships and habits that may cause an environment of unhealthy and unspiritual appetites in your home. God has called you to be a steward of your home, DO NOT be afraid to make decisions that will steer your family back to loving the Lord and doing His will.
It is easier to pull the weeds while they are still young and new. The longer the bad behavior or unspiritual environment has time to grow, the harder it is to correct the problem. Correction must be swift and appropriate. The sooner you deal with a problem, the less drastic the correction must be and the fewer problems you will have. Worse than that, a bad habit and unspiritual appetites can sprout seeds and multiply in other ways.
It is easier to keep down the weeds when you have a healthy crop of good plants. I would much rather praise a child for a job well done, than always reprimanding a wrong behavior or attitude. When a bad habit does raise its head, combat it immediately by teaching and explaining what it is that is proper and biblical. It is better to reward a step toward good behavior than to try to undo the damage of a bad decision and replace it with the right behavior.
It takes due diligence to properly control the weeds in your yard; it takes the same diligence to prevent weeds from growing in the hearts of your children. Just when you think you have it under control, some ugly weed will sprout from a place you did not expect. God grants us the wisdom and patience to hate the weeds and keep our family healthy and God-honoring.
Pride distances us from God’s blessings because pride removes God from our minds.
When we prioritize God as Jehoshaphat did, we unlock blessings that have a profound impact on our lives.