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C'est la Vie: Weeding... Again.

It's hard not to think when you're out in the quiet of the garden. I've been neglectful of my weeding and it took me the better part of two hours to pull all of the weeds that had grown up and around all of my beautiful plants.

This process really got me thinking about the weeding we need to continue in our relationships. It's easy to let little disagreements of hurt feeling go. Especially in our marriages, we may be too busy with the kids or already at our wits end with juggling parenting and work responsibilities that we let comments slip that should never be said.

For example, (I'm sure none of you will relate to this) your husband has been at work all day and you've been home with a crying baby (or maybe a relentless toddler, pick your poison). You've managed to put a decent meal on the table at your scheduled dinner time, but your husband is still not home. You start busying yourself with picking up toys to pass the time. Ten minutes pass. Fifteen. When the door finally opens and your husband rushes in with an apology and a smile, you huff some degrading comment and rush off to see if the food is still warm.

Eventually you get over it... or so you think. Until the next time it happens. That weed you didn't pull the first time has now started to grow up around the delicate stem of your marriage. If this (or any other minor, but hurtful annoyance) keeps up without being addressed you suddenly have a weed growing completely out of control and choking the life out of the plant we call marriage. Imagine other little hurts or struggles that could cause a similar outcome. Maybe it's that the lawn doesn't get mowed enough. Maybe it's the shoes left in the middle of the floor. Maybe it's the forgetfulness when you ask for a favor on his way home.

But let's not forget to look at ourselves. Maybe you don't cook his favorite foods. Maybe you forget to sit close and talk to him after the kids go to bed. Maybe you aren't as passionate as you used to be. All of these little things add up to a marriage garden full of weeds. Before you know it, the weeds are taller than the plants and it feels overwhelming just looking at the mess it has become. Suddenly there is a painful and long process of cleaning up the mess ahead of you. You're going to need to put on your work gloves, roll up your sleeves, get down on your knees and get ready to sweat.

It could have all been avoided if we had been more proactive. If we had taken the time to pull the weed just as it broke through the soil. It seemed so much easier to let it go in the beginning, but the end result is even worse. A garden full of weeds can, at some point, look hopeless. We think to ourselves, "I'll just let it go and try again next season." Or worse, "I can't even stand to look at that garden anymore, I'll just plant another one." I hope and pray that none of you reading have reached that point.

But can I propose that you do some weed pulling this week? Your marriage deserves it. If there is a weed beginning to sprout, take the time to yank it out even if your exhausted. If you've let the garden be over-taken, there is no better time than now to sit down with your spouse and make a plan to beautify your marriage again. It's going to take time and dedication, but it is possible.

Have you done any marriage weeding lately? Share some encouragement with us!

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