It’s spring, which means if Floridians have any hope of working outside without being attacked by numerous flying, crawling, and slithering creatures, now is the time to do it. In my yard, I have an area that has been ignored for many years. As the weather is warming and I am spending more time outside I’m noticing a lot of vines. All of which start out small and mild, but if left to grow, they will eventually kill the tree they are on. So, my sons and I set out on a vine clearing adventure. What that means is they cheered me on as I cut and pulled vines. They helped me up, and didn’t laugh too loud, when a vine would snap and I would fall to the dirt. Many vines were far too large to pull. These I cut at the base, knowing I could pull them easily enough after they were dead. As I pulled vine after vine from one tree after another I began to see how appropriate this endeavor was for the beginning of lent – a time when we are asked to step back, look at the parts of our lives that we don’t always like to look at, and then do what we can to remove those things, which if left unchecked will destroy us. Most of these things start out small in a very nonthreatening way, so we allow them to continue. The problem, of course, is these things ultimately desire our demise so that they can flourish. Lent is a great time to pull out the vines, and if one is too large to pull, use this time to cut it off at its source. Over time it will be easier to pull away, though at times scars may remain.

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