During my afternoon training ride in the fertile fields of the Midwest, I become hypnotized by row after row of cultivated soil. In the spring each field is a clean unblemished field of brown potential. Ready to be planted with whatever the farmer chooses this year the fields quietly wait for their purpose.
Is not our hearts and souls the same way? Doesn’t God give us the perfect soil to grow our unique fruits for the world. We methodically plant virtues we choose in our heart. Virtues of Temperance, Humility, Prudence, and Fortitude are the things we aim to plant. These fields of our soul deliberately planted, field tended well and can produce yields of bounty just as the scriptures tell us.
However, the fields are also ripe for ALL seeds. Seeds of grasses, other plants and weeds blow in the air and lay down in those vulnerable fields of soil. Such as our heart too. We are vulnerable to the world and all it exposes us too. The exposure of the evil into our day can lay claim to our soil IF we let it. Grasses of apathy and lukewarm faith. Weeds will produce their own fruit and seeds of more weeds, choking our work of virtues, impacting our yields and stealing our soul.
What’s significant is that WE MUST deliberately act to plant virtue AND deliberately act to remove weeds and cultivated our soil. The devil has a plan for our field just as much as God does. He wants to start with small weeds of lust like the magazine in the checkout lane. He knows if he can get the weed planted, he can grow that weed and bring it to seed others. His goal is to have the weeds choke out the virtues and destroy the field.
I feel that we allow small weeds to fester in our fields in hopes of them not growing any bigger. We believe this lie and don’t act. I believe we don’t deliberately cultivate virtue, as a whole we choose crops and plants of low maintenance with the hope of some yields that will keep us sober and maybe get us to Heaven.
In Matthew 25, God rewards the servant that took his 5 talons and returned 5 more, the guy who worked risking all 5 talons for the good of others. While the one who played it safe with one talon was called wicked and lazy.
We must deliberately cultivate virtue AND deliberately prevent the weeds from taking root. If we do this, recovery becomes easier, our lives become well mannered and we become the person we were meant to be.