Pull the weeds!
For those of you who have been reading my blogs for a while, you know that I like to remember, record, and write about funny and/or sweet comments that children make.
Just a few weeks ago, my four-year-old granddaughter followed close behind me one afternoon as I was pulling weeds in our flower beds. Her small hands grasped the ugly critters right along with my own. After we had gathered a small pile of weeds to throw away, Selah asked, “Nana, why do you pull the weeds out?” Well, even though I’m retired, the “teacher” in me always comes out. This is a teachable moment I tell myself.
I described how rapidly weeds grow, and they can get so big they will choke out the pretty flowers. I also explained how flowers will look prettier without the weeds hanging around them.
I decided to bring a spiritual application into our discussion when I could tell my young granddaughter was really listening.
“Selah, did you know our hearts are like flower beds and they get weeds too?”
She frowned and replied, “No, Nana, I didn’t know that!”
“Well, when our hearts are full of love and kindness and obedience, our hearts are like a pretty flower garden for God. But when we say bad words or we don’t tell the truth or we disobey, these are like weeds in our hearts. It’s just as important to pull the weeds out of our hearts as it is to pull the weeds out of Nana’s flower beds. Then our love and kindness and obedience in our hearts will be like a really pretty garden.
At this, I smiled when Selah took her right hand and felt her heart under her shirt as if she wanted to literally pluck heart weeds right then and there! Ahh, the innocence of a child. I think this is why Jesus enjoyed spending time with children. I wonder if he heard funny comments from the little ones. Jesus was a teacher. I’m sure he used teachable moments with the children as he did with his followers.
As adults, do we need to be pulling any weeds from our own hearts? Bitterness, hate, selfishness, deception, gossip, entitlement, complacency? The weed list goes on and on . . .
Do you have any teachable moments with children in your lives that you’d like to share with others?
I love to hear back from my readers. I reply to all comments!
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Thank you for this beautiful portrait, Becky! You skillfully painted the condition of our hearts, with and without weeds! Dear Lord, pull my weeds!! Let me be a pleasing garden for you!! 🙂
Becky Van Vleet
Thank you, Erma, for stopping by. Yes, dear Lord, pull my weeds, too!
Jean Marie Alfieri
Yes, yes, and yes to all those weeds that need to be pulled. Thank you for this beautiful illustration and example. What a precious time with your grand-daughter. God bless you both!
What a wonderful teachable moment and a great example!
Becky, this is a wonderful article and precious picture. I pray your grandchildren and mine will allow Jesus to keep their hearts free of weeds as they mature.
What a precious moment with your granddaughter! It’s so wonderful that you were able to capture her attention and use the experience to teach her more about God. I’m sure she will always remember this lesson! You’re a great teacher and Grandma!
HI Becky. Loved this! Thank you for sharing this “teachable moment”.
It was many years ago that I asked my 9-year old daughter’s help with a simple question on a questionnaire I had brought home from work. The question was: “nobody knows I” followed by a blank. She shouted, “You know! Why are you asking me?” and ran out of the room in a flood of tears. Her reaction was so unexpected that I feared she had done something really bad, like stolen from a store.
She confessed she had taken her Walkman (I’m dating myself here!) to school. She was so upset that I thought she had lost or broken it. Turned out she was upset because I had asked her when I gave it to her for her birthday to only use it at home. I didn’t even remember telling her that!
I saw this as a great opportunity to talk with her about peer pressure and disobedience. I also learned a lesson that day. When you tell your kids something, you better remember it, because they will!
Becky Van Vleet
I love this, Patti–thank you for sharing this teachable moment with your granddaughter. And you’re right, if we don’t remember, the children will!