Lessons from mom

Have had a long, sleepless night, struggling with some emotions and searching for a way to forgive and move past the hurt, when I was reminded of something my mother wrote a year ago…a visualization of how when we don’t find a way to move past the little irritating things, they can become a much bigger problem….

COMMON BURDOCK

{Plant Description: Common burdock is a biennial that grows as a rosette of leaves the first year and then produces a 5-foot-tall, erect, bushy flowering stem. Rosette leaves are distinctive due to their large size, heart-shaped base, wooly undersurface, and hollow leaf stalks (petioles). Stem leaves are similar to but smaller than rosette leaves. Located at the ends of branches or at leaf axils on the flower stem are flower heads comprised of a bur with hooked bristles beneath a closely packed cluster of tubular, purplish flowers. The weed is best known for the hooked bristles on its burs that stick to fur and clothing. The only means by which common burdock reproduces are its seeds.}

Lessons from the burdock jacket”

“A couple weeks ago, I was about to mow the lawn, but it was late in the afternoon and it was getting cold. I located my earmuffs and gloves and was looking for a sweatshirt or light jacket. Just then I remembered the bag of clothes that we had brought in from the car when we came home from our trip to Saratoga for Mother’s Day. There on top was a red and black fleece jacket…perfect. As I mowed the lawn I concentrated on mowing the edges and around the flower beds. That way someone else could mow the main sections without worrying about accidentally mowing off any flowers or raspberries etc. I was tired when I finished (I knew I was finished because the lawn mower ran out of gas and it was time to get supper on the table.) but I was happy to have accomplished the task. However, when I came in I became sad. The soft red and black fleece was invaded by the pricks of many burdock burrs. Even though I could pull off the burrs, many little prickly bits remained stuck into the fabric. I put it into the pile of dirty clothes to deal with later.

So, today was the day. No school, nice weather for drying clothes and an accumulation of dark colored clothes to wash. What to do about the fleece…I had already avoided dealing with it for well over a week and today I felt the need to rescue it. Of course I could just throw it away. That would be much easier. Those burdock made it look ugly and I knew that I wouldn’t be able to wear it even for work tasks because the pricks would be so uncomfortable. But I liked the jacket and I wanted to wear it again. It seemed such a waste to just throw it away. So as I sat on the bed to begin the task of pulling the pricks out one or two at a time, I thought about how this could be a lesson about marriage (or any friendship for that matter). How often do we go about our everyday, ordinary lives and find that we have inadvertently become covered with burrs of irritation or offense. We did not go looking for them. Maybe we were even doing something important or useful. What to do? They cannot really be just overlooked. They are ugly and they make us uncomfortable. For awhile we can ignore or avoid facing the problem, but sooner or later we must face reality. If the person is valuable to us, then it will require time and patience to remove the little pricks that have embedded themselves into our soul and spirit.

As I worked at removing the invaders from my jacket, I found myself praying for the marriages and friendships of people I know and love. May you have the time today to rescue your relationship through forgiveness and attention to detail in removing anything that has caused irritation. It will be worth it.

So my jacket is in the wash and will soon be hung out in the sun to dry. May the Son of God’s Love shine on you and your relationships today!”

~Written May 22, 2009 by my Mother, Beverly Settle

Thank you Mom, for all the lessons taught over the years, and those you continue to teach me. I hope that I can find a way to move past my hurts….to not close myself off to the loved ones who have inflicted years of  emotional scars, and to keep from becoming bitter and angry.

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