Mark 9:47 – And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell. (NIV)
My tomato plants are in the garden. Apart from some watering and fertilizing, I trust the results to God, who provides the warm sun and the rain.
Yet as I watch the plants growing, I am aware of suckers. I'm not thinking of the kind we eat, but the leafy branches that sometimes grow between two fruit-bearing branches. Such suckers sap the strength away from the plant and the fruit that is trying to develop. They need to be pulled out so the plant will produce healthy fruit.
In the same way, as we are striving to grow as Christians and produce fruit, Satan is always alive and often presents himself as a sucker, growing in our midst.
Our task, both in growing tomatoes and as we live our lives, is to keep an eye out for suckers and pluck them out. Let us keep our eyes on God and strive to ensure that no sucker, like Satan, saps our strength.
Prayer: God of light, be with us in our spiritual growth, letting no sucker darken our way. May we grow in the faith of Your grace, O Lord, to be strong, and not let Satan take anything away from us! In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.