After my herb bed gave me fits one year, Keith spent some time completely digging it out and replacing the dirt with potting soil and composted manure. That was $90 worth of dirt! That means I am spending a lot more time, and even more money, caring for it so the original costs won’t be wasted.
I have gone to a real nursery to find plants, larger and more established (and more expensive) than the discount store 99 cent pots. I have dug trenches for some scalloped stone borders to help keep the encroaching lily bed out of it, and to dissuade any critters that might hide beneath the shed behind the bed from using it as a back door.
I water it every day, and fertilize it every other week. I pull out anything that somehow blows in and seeds itself in my precious black soil.
I have seedlings planted to finish the bed, varieties of herbs that are difficult to find as plants, which I had to carry in and out of the house time and time again due to the fluctuating spring temperatures. Then they were transplanted into ever-increasing sized cups as they outgrew their tiny seed sponges, before finally reaching their permanent home in the herb garden bed.
I have invested so much time, energy, and money into this herb garden that I am not about to let it die.
Why is it that we will work ourselves silly because of a monetary investment, while at the same time neglecting other things much more important to our lives?
How about your marriage? I say to every young couple I know, “Marriage is a high maintenance relationship.” Right now, they think they will always be this close, always share every joy and every care. They think there will never come a time when she wonders if he still loves her, or he wonders if she cares at all about the problems he must deal with at work.
Life gets in the way. If you want to stay as close as you are during that honeymoon phase, you have to tend your little garden. Fix his favorite meal. Send her flowers. Put a love note in his lunchbox. Take out the garbage without being asked. Find a babysitter and go out on a date. Just sit down after the kids are in bed--make them go to bed, people--and talk to each other. And listen! Pray together. Study together. Worship together. Laugh together. Cry together.
What about your relationship with God? Do you think you can maintain a close relationship with someone you don’t know? He gave you a whole book telling you who He is, 1 Cor 2:11-13. How much time do you spend with it? How often do you talk to Him? How can He help you when you never ask? How can you enjoy being in the presence of someone with whom you have nothing in common? Disciples want nothing more than to become like their teachers, 1 Pet 2:21,22; 2 Pet 3:18.
None of that comes without effort. You must spend some time and energy, maybe even make a few sacrifices to cultivate your relationship with God. When you have invested nothing, it means nothing to you, and it shows.
Spend some time today improving your marriage, tending to your family relationships, cultivating your love and care for your brethren, and most of all, caring for your soul—pulling out the weeds, feeding it, nursing it along--so it will grow into a deeper, stronger, more fruitful relationship with your God.
Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap according to kindness; break up your fallow ground; for it is time to seek Jehovah, till he come and rain righteousness upon you, Hosea 10:12.