Thursday, July 23, 2009
Spring is a wonderful time of the year. One of the reasons that I moved to Arkansas is that I don’t like to be cold. Spring brings with it warmer weather and the end of winter, so I look forward to spring every year.
There are many things about spring that I enjoy. When the redbud and the dogwood bloom, they remind me how much I enjoy living in Arkansas. I love to take a ride on country roads just looking at the trees. The flowers blooming make spring a special time of the year. Driving through town when the azaleas are blooming is great. When spring comes each year there is something else that we can look forward to. The grass begins to grow.
The grass beginning to grow again is something about spring that I am not fond of. It seems to be difficult to keep the lawn mowed. This year it has been hard to mow because of the rain. We have had over 17 inches of rain in May so far.
In the past it has been my responsibility to keep the churchyard mowed at my church. We have a large churchyard, so it takes quite a while to mow. I had to mow during the evenings after I get off work. It took two or three evenings a week to keep the churchyard looking good.
The reason that I’m not that happy when the grass begins to grow in the spring isn’t because I don’t like to mow. I actually enjoy mowing with the riding mower. It’s because of the difficulty in finding the time. Finding several evenings a week to mow is never easy.
Riding on a mower gave me time to think. What else would I do while riding back and forth across the churchyard. One evening while I was mowing, my mind started thinking about how my devotional time with God, and my mowing time were similar. In my busy life it is difficult to find the time to spend with God, just like it is difficult to find the time to get the mowing done.
The Apostle Paul knew that it could be difficult to find the time to spend with God. When he was writing to Timothy he warned him about becoming so busy that he didn’t have time for spiritual exercise. In 1 Timothy 4:7,8 he gave Timothy this inspired advice. "Spend your time and energy in training yourself for spiritual fitness. Physical exercise has some value, but spiritual exercise is much more important, for it promises a reward in both this life and the next".
Just like it is important for me to find the time to get the yard mowed, it is also important for me to find the time for what Paul calls spiritual exercise. What was Paul talking about when he said that spiritual exercise was important? I feel that spiritual exercise is Bible reading and study along with prayer. That is talking to God through prayer, and listening to him through reading and studying the Bible.
Have you noticed what happens when a yard misses a mowing or two? It begins to look bad. The same thing can happen to our spiritual life. If we miss our spiritual exercise we begin to get flabby and out of shape. Like a yard that hasn’t been mowed our life begins to look out of control. The longer we let it go the worse it gets. For a neat and trim life, regular devotional time spent with God is a must.
The next time you are mowing your yard, (I know it will be soon), think about your spiritual life. Are you spending enough time with God to keep your life neatly trimmed?