At first glance the instruction seems to be the typical ‘be a helper to those around you’ type of message. You know, make sure that others are walking in the right direction and understand what they are supposed to be doing. But after a little closer inspection we can see that somehow I (or you) are responsible for God’s grace getting to those around us. We have the ability to block God’s grace.
Eugene Peterson uses the image of letting a weed go to seed in your garden to help us understand the bitter root defiling others. I am in a constant battle in my little garden with purslane. It is a little weed that isn’t too impressive as far as weeds go, but it is persistent. Just let one of those plants go to seed and you will be fighting them for a while. I read that their seed can remain viable in the soil for 40 years.
A little bitterness in our soul is like that. It is hard to root out and once it gets going, it spreads to others.
Lord, help me today to root out anything in me that would stop your grace from flowing to those in need of it.