Let both of them grow together until the harvest time.
There are these weeds in all our wheat, problems mixed up with all the good things in our lives, people we don’t like and things we don’t like mixed up with the things we do. Our lives are like that. They’re mixed. We’re always trying to make them better, of course, and we should, but they’re always going to be like this, no matter what we do.
And what’s interesting to me in Jesus’s explanation of the Parable of the Weeds is that he’s saying God will do the sorting out, the Son of Man, through his angels. They will “collect out of his Kingdom all who cause others to sin and all evildoers,” and this won’t happen until the end of time, the end of age.
They want the early church the way they want it and they don’t want to wait. They want to judge and they are judging.
The context for this is the urge of the disciples to do the sorting themselves and to do it now. They want the early church the way they want it and they don’t want to wait. They want to judge and they are judging. They want to weed out and they are weeding out, or trying, and the problem with that is that it’s not their job and the problem with that is they don’t know and can’t know which is which really. The weeds and the wheat are so mixed up with each other that it’s hard to tell who is good and who isn’t.
If we pull up the weeds now, we’ll ruin the wheat.
And I think we’re the same. Who are we to say what’s wheat and what chaff? Even in ourselves. It’s like the writing process: we’re never good judges of our own work when we’re in the act of writing. Sometimes what we think is bad is good and sometimes what we think is good is bad and we can’t tell at all if we don’t wait and let the writing cool off and even then we can’t be sure. We don’t have enough distance.
And maybe that’s not just true for how we judge others. Maybe what we think of as our biggest limitation—I don’t know, our shyness, or our quick temper—will turn out to be our biggest gift. Maybe something we don’t give much thought to at all, something we taken for granted in ourselves—our sense of humor, maybe, or our quickness with numbers—will turn out to be of real use somehow. We don’t know.
It’s like the writing process: we’re never good judges of our own work when we’re in the act of writing. Sometimes what we think is bad is good and sometimes what we think is good is bad and we can’t tell at all if we don’t wait and let the writing cool off and even then we can’t be sure.
And we can trust God. We can trust God to see the goodness beneath the problems, the value beneath all our sins. He knows the difference.
So, let us stop trying to judge, others and ourselves. Let us stop trying to weed our fields until they’re perfect. Let us just live in the moment and do the best we can and trust the Son of Man and his angels to sort it all out.