The other day I was weeding my garden. Keep in mind, I live on almost 40 acres surrounded by farmers who raise much of their own food. My little, tiny speck of a garden is barely noticeable compared to my neighbors' gardens. Many women in my ward raise gardens big enough to feed our community. They raise all sorts of vegetables, melons, and herbs. Some even raise carrots into the late fall. And, of course they can and store all of it (but that's a different subject).
Me? Well, I'm happy if I get a couple of tomatoes by the end of the summer. I grew up in the middle of a city. My grandfather grew tomatoes, citrus trees, and a few fruit trees. His mandarin oranges ripened in December and I can still smell them. But, I didn't inherit any of those tendencies. In fact, I have a "black thumb." Don't believe me? Just check out my houseplants or what used to be houseplants.
As I was dutifully weeding my garden (I do determine every year that this will be the year I actually accomplish growing a real garden), I let my mind wander. It takes so much work and effort to keep a garden weeded. Even letting it go for a few days will allow weeds to reproduce at an astronomical rate. You don't have to do anything to encourage the weeds, you just have to do nothing.
In order to encourage the desirable plants to grow, you have to be diligent in making sure the plants receive nourishment on a regular basis. It can't be hit and miss or the plant will suffer and, in turn, so will the harvest. If you want to harvest a bountiful garden, you have to dedicate time and energy and never give in to the weeds, no matter how daunting the weeding task seems to be or how attractive the idea is of doing something, anything, other than weeding.
And so it is with our lives. If we do nothing, weeds will grow. Satan will wrap himself around us and gently guide us down his path. He doesn't necessarily require that we do anything, he usually requires us to do nothing, and in doing nothing, we lose our harvest. He makes the job seem so huge and impossible to accomplish and he tempts us with other, easier things to do. He's a master at what he does because he's been doing it for so long.
If we want to harvest a bountiful life, we have to diligently work hard to remove those weeds that choke us and take away our nutrients. We have to keep at it, day after day, week after week, year after year. It will take us a lifetime to see our harvest, but what a harvest it will be if we've invested the time and energy into making it what the Lord wants it to be.
Now get out there and weed your gardens!