Beware of Pretty Weeds

Weeds are weeds and gossip is gossip. Both choke off life.

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Posted in , Oct 20, 2014

Photo of weeds by Anneke de Blok for Thinkstock, Getty Images

One afternoon my then 6-year-old daughter, Abby, was playing outside with her younger sister while I vacuumed our SUV. Just as I was sucking up the last of the petrified French fries that were wedged under the backseat, Abby called for me.

“Mommy! Mommy! Mommy!” she said in her most excited voice. “I have a surprise for you!”

I played along, trying to peek behind her back where “my surprise” was awaiting me.

“Here, Mommy,” she said, smiling from ear to ear. “I picked you a flower!”

I smiled and graciously accepted it, though upon further inspection, I realized it wasn’t a flower at all. Abby had given me a very pretty purple weed. As I looked at the weed more closely, I thought, This weed really is lovely. It could fool almost anybody into thinking it’s a flower.

Later that evening, I received a telephone call from a friend at church. She began sharing some very damaging information about a person in our congregation.

Even though it felt wrong to listen, I hung on every juicy detail because my friend kept interjecting, “I’m just telling you all of this so that you’ll know how to pray about it.”

“Of course,” I affirmed.

“Ok, I’ve got to go but if I hear anything else, I’ll be sure and call you back,” she said. “See you at Bible study.”

As I hung up the receiver, I felt just awful.  

“Man, I wish I hadn’t been a part of that,” I mumbled under my breath.

As conviction covered me, I went into my bedroom and hit my knees.

I prayed, “God, I’m sorry I was a part of that. I should have identified that information as gossip.”

I stayed on my knees in silence, feeling really badly about that evening’s conversation and replaying it over and over in my mind. Just then, God brought to my remembrance the pretty purple weed Abby had given me hours before.

That pretty, purple weed that fooled Abby fooled you too, God spoke into my spirit. Not in an audible voice but deep down inside.

I knew it was God, and I knew what He meant.

That gossip was packaged nicely with, “I’m just sharing this information with you so you’ll know how to pray about it.” It was a pretty, purple weed. But weeds are weeds and gossip is gossip.

Both choke off life.

That little weed that looked so innocent and pretty among my begonias would have eventually choked the life right out of them if Abby hadn’t removed it from my flowerbed that afternoon.

And, if we continue to let little weeds like gossip grow in our lives, they’ll soon overtake us too. That’s how Satan tries to fool believers.

Don’t be fooled by his tricks. When the Holy Spirit prompts you to do some “weed eating” in your life, pray about it, and ask for divine wisdom and discernment.

The big, ugly weeds are easy to identify. It’s the attractive ones we have to worry about. Let God be the ultimate gardener in your life. As you live close to Him, you’ll become more skilled at identifying the weeds in your life–even the pretty ones.

Pray this with me:

Father, help me to identify the weeds in my life so that together we can rid my life of them so that I can continue growing in You. Put a watch over my mouth, Lord, so that I won’t gossip, and give me the discipline to walk away from ‘gossipy’ conversations. I love you, God. In the Mighty Name of Your Son, Jesus, Amen.

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