We live in a world where we are constantly enticed into finding the easy way. However, the easy way is most often fatal to reaching your dreams.....instead, you need to be tenacious. A common lawn weed holds a great lesson for us all in how to be tenacious.
Our lawn is full of creeping charlie. Thanks to our European ancestors, who brought this herb with them, we now have lawns full of this weed that will overtake the grass. It thrives in every condition, from full shade to full sun, from wet to dry, and everywhere in between.
It’s so incessant and hard to get rid of because it sends new shoots out under the ground. When you pull up a handful of it, you’re just pulling parts and pieces, never getting to the original root, because there isn’t ONE root to pull that will lead to its demise. I have used it for herbal tea, but mostly I spend my summers figuring out the best long-term plan to eradicate it from my yard.
But today, the creeping charlie taught me a great lesson.
Be tenacious in moving toward the light
Along the outside borders of my garden, I put down the boards that used to be the sides of raised beds. Since my weed friend is everywhere, I figured it would help control it from getting inside of the garden area and I’d have less weeding to do.
As I mowed the lawn today, I moved aside those boards… and noticed the shoots of the creeping charlie. The herb on one side of the boards had sent shooters underneath the board, and they then popped up above ground on that other side.
What came to my mind was tenacity….these little buggers were very tenacious! They had crept under the board, in the darkness, until they found the light they were seeking, where they popped up and sprouted leaves.
Now, yes, generally, all plants do the same thing. I thought about this again as I mowed past the weeds growing up between the blocks of concrete on our sidewalks.
These little tiny plants grow in the dark, seeking for the light. They wind and weave their way along and through and around whatever obstacles they encounter until they finally find a path where they can come up through the ground.
Isn’t that a perfect definition of tenacious? They keep going and going, never giving up, dealing with each obstacle they encounter. They have their end in mind - find the light - and they just keep moving along, bit by bit, until they get there.
I’m betting they’re not in a hurry, and they don’t get impatient, either. (Aren't we good at getting impatient?)
Let’s ignore that these are plants, and don’t have the ability to choose to quit. Even so, it’s still a great lesson for us more “advanced” humans, don’t you think?
Are you this tenacious?
How quickly do you quit when things get hard, when you face an obstacle, or when darkness of some sort comes over you?
Often, we think that the way should be easy. And so much of what you see and read and hear today is touting easy.
(Do you remember the Staples Easy button?)
Now, there’s no sense in putting in extra work when there is an easier way to go….but the belief that all things should be easy is to your detriment.
Struggle and work and effort are essential to your growth. Being tenacious in the process - continuing to move forward in spite of the challenges - adds to your character and your strength.
In fact, Jesus taught us that this is part of the deal here on earth. It’s referred to as “enduring to the end,” or simply enduring.
It’s the part we like to forget about. Because enduring means persisting, patiently, day by day, minute by minute, through the difficulties and challenges in life.
The author of Hebrews wrote about Abraham, and how long he had to wait to receive the promise that through him, all people of the earth would be blessed (He was 100 years old when Isaac, his promised heir, was born). This is what is written:
"And thus, having patiently endured, he obtained the promise." (Heb 6:15, American Standard Version)
When you patiently endure, when you are tenacious, you hold on to the promises. You hold on to your faith, your hope, and your belief in Christ and his ability to save us, when we choose to repent and come unto him.
In Matthew, we read about the trials that will come to the earth before the Second Coming. Matthew tells us, "But he who endures to the end shall be saved." (Matt 24:13, New King James Version)
When you’re feeling down, or when you want to quit, think about that tenacious creeping charlie that just keeps moving to the light.