I’ve been fighting moss on my patio this morning. It’s a re-occurring little skirmish we’ve been involved in for years to keep nature from reclaiming our brick patio and ultimately our back yard. The moss is beautiful to look at—like a lush green shag carpet, but if left alone it takes over and smothers everything else out. Its beauty conceals a danger. Once this stuff gets wet it is slick as glass, and a broken hip is not something I want to experience.
Moss tends to grow in damp shady spots so our brick patio is a prime habitat. Add to that the normal accumulation of dust and you have garden conditions that will produce a bumper crop of this stuff. You can scrap it, pressure wash it, or poison it, but it always comes back. It’s the price you pay for a cool refreshing spot under the natural canopy of the trees.
Today, God taught me a little lesson as I scraped the moss off the pavers with my trusty five-in-one tool. The real issue is not the moss—the issue is the condition of the brick pavers. I’m more like that brick than I would like to think. Once the brick is set, it does not move—it’s there for the long haul. Deep down, I envy the brick because once I get used to things I don’t like change. But alas, I am not a brick.
Change hurts. It forces me to grow or else. It stretches me in places I am convinced were never meant to be elastic. I like things the way they are, but God is looking ahead to the way things will be. The mileage in between is what we call change.
When I dig in with my heels, gripe and moan, and refuse to change, I assume the position of a brick. Bricks were created for static environments—humans were not. Like those patio pavers, the dust of disobedience, or stubbornness, or a million other things begins to accumulate. Add to that a little moisture from inactivity and a shady environment that abounds when I don’t pursue God, and all of a sudden a crop of moss is growing on me and I am not even aware of it.
It starts small. No big problem, but if not dealt with, it sucks what little life there is out of me. It covers me, smothering out my desire to get up and get after it. I was not meant to be a moss garden—I was meant to be the garden of God where I stretch for the glory of His face—the passion of His presence. But for this to happen, I must be willing to change—to reach for what I’ve never experienced—to step into places that are not necessarily what everyone else would call safe. Safe is just another word for covered with moss.
It is a constant battle for me and I’ll bet—for you. Everyone who visits our patio comments on the beauty of the moss. For them it gives character to the bricks. It makes them look ancient, like they’ve been there forever. But we are not bricks in a patio, no we are the sons and daughters of God, yearning and learning how to walk in the presence of God who is bent on changing us into the image of His Son.
Take a few moments today and check your moss build up. If it is starting to accumulate, it may be time for you to get up, get a little spiritual exercise, and shake the stuff off. Otherwise, God may show up in the next few days with a sharp edged scrape or worse, a pressure washer. You see, God has absolutely no tolerance for moss.