Last night I finally decided it was time to weed a landscaped area that has been bugging me every time we pull into the driveway. A few of the weeds had grown so tall, it was embarrassing I hadn’t addressed it sooner.

I pulled the most obvious weeds first and then moved to the smaller weeds. As I made my way closer to the orange tree, I noticed an interesting weed growing at the base of the tree. The tree is still young, so the heavy branches nearly touch the ground and I hadn’t noticed it growing before. As I pushed the branches away to be in a better position to pull it out, I realized it was a palm tree. A PALM TREE!

How in the world had I not noticed?! It was decent sized which meant it had been growing for a while. I was naive to think I could easily yank it out. No, it took me quite a while – carefully digging around the water line that the roots of the palm tree had grown around.

When I finally got it out – my body covered in scratches thanks to the branches of the orange tree – I marveled how in the world a palm tree started growing there and how I failed to notice it when it was 3 feet tall. A neighbor walking by saw my victory and commented that letting it grow much longer would have made hard to remove without damaging the orange tree.

As I pulled into the driveway after church this afternoon, I thought of the palm tree once again. I was in a pondering mood and wondered how many “palm trees” I have in my life.

What is growing unnoticed without effort – yet will be a beast to extract?

My thoughts then turned to the other weeds I had pulled last night. It wasn’t until the weeds became obnoxious that I made any effort to remove them – I wondered had I noticed the palm tree right away would I have immediately removed it? It would have taken minutes if that were the case. Or would I have driven by just like I did all the other weeds?

We all have weeds. And just like habits, those weeds can grow some deep roots making them a challenge to remove. We’d do ourselves a favor if we did some frequent weedings. Weed out habits. Weed out vices. Weed out people. Weed out negative talk.

No sense in growing a palm tree when I planted an orange tree.