Early and Often
Posted on September 7, 2023 by Elizabeth Welte in Victory Call
Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting! Psalm 139:23-24
During a recent Colony Graduation at America’s Keswick, Tim Harvey, one of our full time maintenance staff, was asked to encourage and challenge one of the grads. Tim said something that stuck in my head. He encouraged the graduating man to “pull weeds early and often.” In other words, in the process of our spiritual growth, the enemy is prone to throw in weeds in amongst the good seeds God is planting. As stewards of our own spiritual gardens, Tim encouraged him to weed early and often.
What a powerful word. If we were to heed this single, simple truth and apply it consistently in our own lives we would save ourselves much strife and grief. Bad habits are easily formed, but not easily broken.
A few years back there was, what I thought, a plant growing in the flower bed around my house. It really was a weed, which I should have figured out by how rapidly it grew. I ignored it for a few weeks and by the time I realized it was really a weed, it was 5 feet tall and had a ¾ inch thick stalk for a stem. It was very difficult to up root. If I had pulled it when it was 5 inches it would have dislodged easily but my delay magnified the work it took to get rid of it.
Sin is a lot like that weed. If ignored, it will drive its roots deep, entangling our hearts in a mangled mess. When we finally get around to trying to get rid of it, it does not let go easily. If however, we search for weeds early and often, we will catch the weeds when they are small and will be more easily pulled out before they become well established.
How do we do this without becoming morbidly introspective and self-focused?
Regular Holy Spirit heart examination.
On a daily basis perhaps each evening, offer a prayer asking God to search our heart to reveal sin. When the Holy Spirit brings awareness of our sin we can proceed by confessing and repenting of that sin. This way we can keep short accounts and catch sin patterns before they take root and sprout into full blown trees.
Remember, early and often.
Written by Diane Hunt: Diane Hunt serves on the board of America’s Keswick and is the Executive Director & CEO of Changed Choices, a Christian non-profit in North Carolina. She is also a biblical counselor and women’s event speaker. For more information about having Diane speak at your next event please contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This Week’s Verse to Memorize:“For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.” Hebrews 8:10