Spring! Such a beautiful time of the year! As I write this, we are full blown into the throws of spring, although you may be reading this at another season in your life. This is about the season of spring and dealing with the weeds…

As a child growing up, my father had to get very creative in how he disciplined us kids. I was one of five, and we all had so many different personalities. But he was a very thoughtful man and always wanted us to think about what we did, not just “punish” us. So one of the ways he used to discipline us was to have us go out into the garden to pull weeds. He would set a timer for 30 minutes. With five kids, he had the best lawn and garden in the neighborhood, and all the neighbors would comment on how well kept it was!

In my youth, I despised this. For me, this was the worst kind of punishment. Ground me, take TV away, but please no weeds!! Nevertheless, there I was out there when I needed to be disciplined. I was not wanting to meditate on what I did wrong… Ok, I got caught doing something wrong, but for me, true remorse was not to come until years later. Can you see the rebellion I carried in my heart? Ok, I pull the weeds because I have to, but you can’t make me think about it!! I’ll just serve my time until I am free…

Little did I know about freedom.

Years later, I was trying to kick the bad habit of smoking cigarettes. I was trying to replace a bad habit with a good habit, anything to fill my time and take my aggression. I found my solace in pulling weeds. Yep, going outside and pulling up the weeds in my yard became a holy experience for me. I was able to deal with the issues that smoking a cigarette would cover when I went to pull the weeds. I remember telling my father these words. He was so pleased that I found peace in the garden…

The Garden, my garden. The garden of my heart where I can interact with Papa, Yeshua, Holy Spirit. Coming to All Things Restored and growing with the body all these years opened the eyes of my heart to all of this. But there was nothing to prepare me for the ultimate experience: my first live encounter with my angel.

One morning, early in April of 2013, I decided that I was going to spend the morning out in my yard cleaning it up and weeding. I remember taking this time and using it as a time of prayer…Lord, search my heart, pull out those weeds that keep me from bearing fruit. I had a container that was full with weeds and debris from the winter season. I was also pruning back some plants. All of a sudden, the recycling truck was pulling down my cul de sac. It was not recycling day. This truck stopped right in front of my house and a man got out. I recognized him immediately. He was my angel. I recognized him by the light that his eyes carried and the countenance that he had. He had on coveralls. He got out of the truck and pointed to my weed collection and motioned me to bring it to him. I did. He took it. Everything, even the container. When I recognized the moment that was happening, I went to give him the rest of the debris that I had collected. He took that too. He winked at me and then left.

I stood there in awe, realizing this was indeed a holy moment. The Lord allows us the opportunity and the time to deal with our stuff and when we are ready to get rid of it, He takes it. He patiently waits for us to realize what needs to be uprooted, what needs to be pruned. Then He just moves in and takes it from us. It is an offering, a trade…trading our stuff, our weeds, to get to behold more of Him!

So I encourage you, during your spring season, whenever that is for you, go into the garden of your heart. Allow him to pull up those weeds, the debris from the prior season. Fruitfulness will come when we tend to our gardens!

-Pat Wanas

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