Today I find myself outside pulling small weeds from our stone and gravel driveway. This mindless task reminds me of another time three years ago doing a similar thing.
Then, it was pulling weeds out of a cracked and broken sidewalk beside a house used by the local university as a classroom. On my hands and knees, and in the hot sun, I wondered how on earth this task accomplished anything for the eternal kingdom. The weeds were overgrown and obviously neglected and they did nothing to enhance the beauty of the landscape around the premises.
I had time on my side and a great love to make places more beautiful, so I tackled the task. I remember thinking then, it would be a means by which I could serve the academics of the university, never dreaming of course that someday I would be one as well.
But there it was that God spoke to me very clearly and told me to lay down my gardening tools, take off my gardening gloves and come sit at his feet and learn from Him. I chased this first thought out of my head like a lion chases prey. But it entered again and what began as a simple, gentle tug on my heart towards the impossible (as far as I was concerned), I stepped forward with small baby steps of faith and tiny pocketfuls of courage to study about God.
It's been an amazing three years. I 've read some great books (more than ever in my life before); I've written academic papers; I've met the most amazing and most dear lifetime friends and I've travelled to Greece and Turkey.
Now I look back and ask "how did it all happen so fast?". I'm delighted at the accomplishment and lessons learned but I also grieve that it is over. I miss all aspects of it greatly.
So, here I am today, down on all fours, weeding - pulling up things that don't belong where they've grown, (ruining a perfect manicure!) and I'm genuinely hoping for You, Father, to speak to me again.