As I drove into my driveway Tuesday I noticed a HUGE weed growing on the corner of the house. When I say huge I mean gargantuan huge! It stood three feet tall with a stalk the circumference of a quarter. No lie, I took a picture just to show the hugeness. Normally I wouldn't share the sad state of weeding, or lack of weeding, in the Webster household but come on, it's not everyday you have a Jack and the Beanstalk weed in your yard!
So why even bring up this embarrassing monstrosity? Well I had just come home from a Reconciliation meeting for helping to prepare my second grader for the sacrament. Terri, the Coordinator of Religious Education for our Parish, does a great job and gives you a lot to think about as a parent and on a personal level as a participant of the sacrament. So my mood was contemplative and when I saw this growth in my garden my first thought was about SIN.
Weeds being used as a metaphor for sin is nothing new but, wow, in this case it was staring at me in the face! Kapow! That big honkin' weed is like my sins, small unimportant little venial sins, when ignored become big obstacles in my relationship with Christ. Just like the weeds in my garden if I'm vigilant about weeding (reconciliation) I tackle them when they are small and not too numerous. So the excuses to avoid weeding (which there are millions), or to ignore the weeds no one can see because they're hidden behind a Hosta plant, might not be the best idea as my Weedzilla is proof --they don't just go away on their own!
Also like the "Butterfly Effect" where a small change at one place can have a large effect elsewhere, i.e. a butterfly flapping its wings in Africa can affect weather in the United States, so do our small sins affect the Body of Christ.
25 And so there is no division in the body, but all its different parts have the same concern for one another. 26 If one part of the body suffers, all the other parts suffer with it; if one part is praised, all the other parts share its happiness. 27 All of you are Christ's body, and each one is a part of it (1 Corinthians 12:25-27).
In other words, we don't live in a vacuum. What we do affects others, even if we think it is in the privacy of our home or minds. So my sins affect all who are part of the Body of Christ, even people I will never meet and don't even know exist! Wow, talk about pressure and responsibility to myself and others. Who can handle all this on their own? Luckily we don't have to, we have the Church and the wonderful Sacraments instituted by Christ to help us. The tricky thing is we actually have to take part in those sacraments to reap the most out of them.
So I guess I'll get that shovel, back hoe, or what ever is needed to dig that pesky weed up. Luckily I have the tools to tackle my weed problem!
Peace and Joy,