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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Write an INSPIRATIONAL or DEVOTIONAL piece (04/26/07)

TITLE: The Roar of the Dandelions
By Catrina Bradley


Be careful! Watch out for attacks from the Devil, your great enemy. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for some victim to devour. 1 Peter 5:8

The first gardening season my husband and I spent in our new home, we followed the advice of an expert…sort of. That spring we had him apply weed control stuff on our newly dug planting beds, and to my amazement, no weeds grew amongst the tender Jack Frost lisgustrum and infant Blue-Rug juniper. We were overjoyed until we noticed that the weeds had merely packed their bags and moved to our lawn.

My husband took control of the situation immediately. A trip to the hardware store netted him weed killer and a sprayer. “We will eradicate the invaders!” I busied myself out back while he went to work in the front yard, pacing to and fro zapping weeds.

He was almost finished when I came to check on his progress and offer him a cold drink. I relaxed in the rocker to enjoy the coolness that inhabits our porch, and absently picked up the weed killer bottle. I was curious which brand he’d chosen. Ok, and I admit, I also wanted to double-check that he read the label right.

I couldn’t believe what the words said.

I read it again.

Then I traced the words with my finger as I read them a third time.

“Honey! Hey, Bo!”

“Yo! What up?”

“Yo, did you read this bottle close?”

“Yah, it says weed killer.”

“Yah, it does. Weed and GRASS killer.”

“What? No. No it doesn’t.” Bo sprayed another weed, and the grass around it in a five-inch diameter.

“Stop! Stop spraying!” I was on my feet, my view encompassing the entire front lawn, one weed at a time.

Within a week, a huge patch of brown grass surrounded each dead weed.

Within a month, our lush front lawn was marred by the missing pieces of a sod puzzle. It took much longer than that summer for those holes to fill in.

The next season, a passer-by would have deemed our front grass desperately in need of help, but we had survived an entire year of open wounds caused by our own inept efforts. We were strong enough now to hold our heads high and pretend it didn’t bother us. We could even laugh at our blunder and ourselves. Under-riding our best efforts, though, was the undercurrent of shame. We had known better and still messed up.

Throughout that long, second season, we watched Bermuda runners creep into the gaps, slowly at first, but then in multitude.

By the end of the third season, the holes no longer existed.

But, I knew that would happen. I knew from the day of the siege on the sod the lawn would eventually be made whole again. I had faith that the Bermuda would do the same thing it’s been doing since it was created – creep and spread and fill.

Still, I fretted, and stewed, and blamed. I didn’t like the fact that I had to wait, and let all who passed by my house see what fools we were.

The fourth season, we called the expert back in.

Now, years later, neighbors drive by and see a lush front lawn. Virtually weed free, well maintained. We didn’t make the mistake of not staying in contact with the expert.

Be careful! Watch out for attacks from the Devil, your great enemy. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for some victim to devour. Take a firm stand against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sisters all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are.

In his kindness God called you to his eternal glory by means of Jesus Christ. After you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation. All power is his forever and ever. Amen

1 Peter 5:8-11 (NLT)

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This article has been read 1463 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Joanne Sher 05/03/07
Great spiritual application - and I love the casual writing style.
Leigh MacKelvey05/04/07
A wonderful devotional! I loved the strong verbs and nouns throughout. It is a message we are all familiar with with an original and apt example! Great work!
Delia Latham 05/05/07
Excellent article. I love the title, it drew me in - had to see what it was about. Wonderful spiritual application!
Cheri Hardaway 05/07/07
When you said your husband took control (of the weeds in the yard), I would have caught on quicker (and that may be a testimony to my denseness, rather than how it was written ;D) if you'd indicated that he felt he had no need of the Expert after the first successful weed eradication in the garden. But the message was still clear and the application was excellent. And I loved the title. Good work. Blessings, Cheri
Jan Ackerson 05/07/07
What I loved most about this was that you made your point without preaching it. You trusted your writing and your readers' intelligence, and you let the message speak for itself. Very, very good.
Sheri Gordon05/07/07
Very interesting analogy -- so subtly, yet direct. Excellent job.
Ann Grover05/07/07
Excellent message through wonderful dialogue and colourful picture words....
Sharlyn Guthrie05/07/07
Your title is great, and your point clearly made. The story kept my interest because I could see it happening at my house!
Jacquelyn Horne05/07/07
Yes, we need to stay in touch with the expert. Good advice. We also need to learn to pay attention to the directions (the Bible).
Myrna Noyes05/08/07
Good message here to stay in touch with the Expert and not try to handle things in our own wisdom! This was well-written, and I especially liked the sentence about how the "weeds had merely packed their bags and moved to our lawn." I think several of them took flights to my lawn, as well! :) Nice job!
Patty Wysong05/08/07
I really like this! This is a great reminder to stick with the expert so I don't get into the wrong stuff. The dialog is great--I could it quite clearly! :-)
Janice Fitzpatrick06/20/07
Wow! I really like this. I could relate to this and enjoyed your comparisons.This is so true and hits home. Sometimes I have asked otehrs for help when I needed simply to get on my knees and ask for help from the who is the Best advice giver in the universe.:0) Praise God we serve a patient and loving Lord though and how He loves to hear us call him "Abba","Dadddy" and run to him for all of our needs,whether big or small. Keep up the great writing. I love your style!!Janice
Jan Ackerson 07/16/07
Catrina, I'm picking pieces for the Front Page Showcase, and I've come back to this wonderful devotional. I plan to feature it for the week of August 13. Look for it on the FW home page!
Rita Garcia08/13/07
Love your style, Catrina! Congrats, appearing in the Showcase!!
Joanne Sher 08/13/07
You KNOW I love this! SO deserving of the showcase. Needed it today, too!
Dennis Berlin08/13/07
Very easy article to relate to--I bet you're not the only ones to make that mistake in the literal OR spiritual sense! : )
Betty Castleberry08/14/07
Very nice devotional. Congrats on getting the showcase.