I took the photo of the Rose blooms (left) at the church’s parking lot shed in February. After a month, I couldn’t see the Rose anymore.
A flowering vine (Great Bindweed?) has entangled and engulfed the Rose.
Indeed, when the Rose was planted, the flower garden was cleared of weeds and covered with wood barks to prevent grass from growing.
Somehow, the Great Bindweed crept and started winding its vines onto the plant.
When I took the photo, I saw the viny plant encroaching at Rose’s base.
It illustrates how our lives can easily be entangled with sin and many things that hinder us from living authentic Christian life.
It starts with little anomalies, which we thought were insignificant.
What adds to our disregarding these minute anomalies is that the world sees them as “normal”.
Because it seemed insignificant to affect us, our denial of sin encroaching in our lives leads to neglect.
How many times have we told calmly and with confidence ourselves that “I can get out anytime” or “I can easily remove or stop them if I wanted to”?
Indeed we were successful in the first instance. However, we eventually stop shaking off those “little, insignificant anomalies.”
Because we didn’t deal with sin seriously and kill it at its root in the first instance, it continues to grow gradually.
Evil is vicious. Allowing it to rule your heart and mind can easily entangle you on many sides and drown your life.
That’s what happened to the beautiful Rose in the church’s garden.
It’s not the end of Rose’s story, though.
Somehow, the gardener or a group of gardeners will come and clear all the viny entanglements, perhaps one Working Bee day.
The reality is, like the Rose in our story, we cannot tackle sin at its root.
We need the Master Gardener, the Almighty God, to deal with all our sins. He sends His son, Jesus Christ, our Saviour and Redeemer.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him, he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God (Hebrews 12:1-2).
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9).