I wrote my weekend to do list yesterday. I had a good plan, a solid plan, and was hoping to cross off a number of those indoor chores today. But when I woke up this morning I was greeted by radiant sunshine and a brilliant blue sky. I checked the forecast. Yes! Afternoon temps in the 60’s; one of those warm mid-winter days we can look forward to in the South. Instead of being a facilitator to help accomplish my goals for the day, my to do list suddenly became an obstacle to fulfilling my craving to spend time outside – a desire which sprang up as soon as I realized what a beautiful day it was going to be.
I had an internal debate with myself as I prepared breakfast. Should I stick with my original plan, suck it up and get my work done or permit myself to go outside and indulge in one of my favorite activities? Decisions, decisions. Knowing how much I enjoy working in my yard, a friend suggested I postpone my chores and spend at least a few moments outside. Furthermore, he pointed out the extended forecast is calling for clouds tomorrow and rain by Monday. Perfect! Just what I needed – someone to support me in going with Plan B. When I got dressed for the day, I went ahead and put on a pair of old jeans I reserve for working outside . . . just in case I decided to enjoy those few moments. Shortly after noon, I went to get the mail. That did it. Any sliver of resolve I might have been holding onto regarding sticking to my original plan for the day quickly dissolved as I felt the warmth of the sun.
I ate lunch, happily anticipating the outdoor moments I was going to allow myself. Those moments turned into over 2 ½ hours. I could make a persuasive argument that I and my garden benefitted greatly from the time I spent outside. After all, I consider gardening to be one of the best forms of therapy and cool season annual weeds had almost taken over the front bed, encouraged into proliferation by our abnormally warm pre-Christmas weather. But as I knelt pulling up handfuls of chickweed, I couldn’t help but think how easy it is to convince ourselves to give into our desires.
. . . Even when we know what’s required of us and the stakes are much higher than not getting our chores done . . . Even when we believe the One who’s established the boundaries and shown us the way only wants what’s best for us . . .
Isn’t that what happened in the first Garden? And nothing’s ever been the same.