Sunday, May 29, 2016

The Dandelion Clock and the Hour for Letting Go

Finally.  Yes, finally I have got someone to come around and mow the lawn and clear the borders of weeds. They arrive tomorrow with rakes and spades, mowers and strimmers – but not weed killer. I gave the man strict instruction to spray nothing.  I may not have a liking for insects but birds do.  Enough that so many gardens are paved and pebbled over, not mine, I say, not mine!

I have been saying a last farewell to the long grass and the dandelion clocks. The grass has got to that interesting stage with vertical lines from the tall grass.  There is always movement and the grass seeds are ready to be tossed on the wind. A cloud of tiny winged things scatter everywhere I place my feet and the lawn is dotted with forget-me-nots and buttercups. What’s not to love? I’m not sure that I like the manicured look but my neighbours will stop frowning at me.

I know I should wage war on dandelions and dig down to the roots to get rid of them – but I like them. I am glad that God doesn’t rank flowers according to garden centre pedigree.  I like their persistence. I like their deep shade of yellow.  I like their clocks. I like their mechanism for reproducing. It’s a perfect strategy.  Over a hundred and fifty seeds, equipped with parachutes, just waiting to be loose enough to take to the air.

In our weekly prayer meeting I drew a picture of a dandelion clock with a few seeds sailing away. If the dandelion clock held on to its seeds and refused to surrender them to the breeze they would go nowhere. They would just shrivel on the end of the stalk. They would not be allowed to find a bit of soil and send down roots. I suspect that some gardeners, the lawn manicurists and the border patrol types would not object. There are plenty of out-of-the-garden places they could go – let them go there! But the breeze doesn’t discriminate.

I would like to have more of a dandelion mentality. The truth about Jesus I have learned over the years should be like the dandelion seeds loose and ready to take to the air.  The Holy Spirit blows where it wills, but I stubbornly hold on. My truth I would like to pass on to someone who is worthy of it, who won’t brush it aside, or smirk at it.  I want to know, before I pass it on, that it will germinate in a ready-to-listen heart and it will be bear fruit. It’s not as if it’s the only seed I possess. There is a lot of truth in me.  But it’s not for staying in me.  It’s for giving away.

A wise friend of mine suggested that the world, not always embracing the spiritual or the Christian, has of late become quite hostile. Humanists and atheists alike are not content to live and let live. It’s hunting season all year round and the prey is the man, woman or child of faith. Calling us idiots and fools they want to skin us of our faith and present us as naked, stripped-of-all-superstition life forms that finally face up to the real world.  They insist we will be happier knowing the truth. They are doing us a favour! Tough love!

We stay silent and hold onto our seeds of truth because we don’t want to be called idiots and fools. How the world labels us matter too much. We should not let the world dictate to us about truth and the real world. Their's is a looking at the world with only one eye barely open.

The breeze doesn’t discriminate – it blows on field and garden alike. The dandelion clock strikes the hour for letting go. The breeze comes and it holds nothing back.  The poet in me would like the hear the inner dandelion wishing every seed the longest of journeys, the brownness of soil, the warm touch of sunshine and the absence of trowels and green fingered gardeners.

The Christian in me knows about the path, and the rocky soil. Knows too about the choking weeds and thistles. But right at the forefront the Christian in me remembers the good soil and the harvest.

I pray for every seed of truth the best of journeys, readiness of spirit and soul to embrace God’s truth, the transforming touch of Holy Spirit and the resilience to flourish despite the enemy’s trowel.

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