Nasty Gnats

treeI noticed one day a gnat flying around in my house. I swatted and killed it. Then a few days later, I noticed another one. As the days went on, I noticed a few more here and there. I thought maybe it was just some gnats that got in the house through an open door. Those nasty gnats can be so annoying! I ignored figuring it out in hopes they would die and just go away.

I noticed a few around my beautiful hibiscus tree purchased several weeks ago right before I was going on a work trip. Of course, I was working long hours and getting ready and had no time to pay attention to it. The tree still had beautiful blooms and looked amazing.

Eleven days later back from my work trip, I noticed the tree right away. It had no blooms and half the leaves were gone. I shrieked at my husband…”what is going on with the tree! It’s dying!” I was outraged because I thought I had been working hard to keep the tree and other plants in my house alive. My first thought was maybe he hadn’t watered it according to my instructions. He assured me he had, and I believe him!

I walked over to the tree to get a closer look and saw all these gnats flying around and crawling all over the soil surface and also on the leaves. They were everywhere! Needless to say, the tree ended up outside! After researching these bugs, I found out that they are fungus gnats and only hatch under the right moist soil conditions. I had been over watering this plant and the gnat larvae were already in the soil. Once the soil got moist enough, the larvae hatched into hundreds of nasty gnats! (Larvae…yuck…hated even typing that word!)

I started thinking about this infestation and how much it’s like sin in my life or what I’ll call bad choices.

We ignore a bad choice here and there that we make. We ignore why we are making them, and we even might blame someone else, even God for those choices. I blamed my husband when really I shouldn’t have ignored the gnats to begin with.

Bad choices come from our soul…they are in there ready to hatch when the conditions are right. It isn’t external, bad choices (sin) are deep within our soul. And if we don’t cultivate our soul the way we should, eventually bad choices will begin to take over our soul and suck our life away.

I had a time in my life where my soul got infested. I ignored the little ways I was seeking fulfillment in all things but God. Then it grew into big ways until my life fell apart. For awhile, my life looked successful or flourishing but eventually others around me could see the wear and tear on my life of a soul infested with bad choices and searching for meaning in other things.

You can be smart, have lots of friends, successful professionally, have so many things and that alone won’t bring fulfillment. Eventually, it catches up to us. The emptiness and searching continues until our souls are infested with gnats.

I’m working on the bug infestation on the tree this weekend and from what I’ve read it’s going to potentially take months to get the plant back to a healthy state.

My journey wasn’t the end of the world, but the journey back from those wrong choices and soul depletion was long and hard. It’s easier to kill one or two gnats than to kill hundreds of them and reverse the soil condition so more don’t surface.

Don’t ignore those nasty gnats in your life. Figure out sooner rather than later why you are making the choices you are making before your soul is infested, and it takes so long to get back to living the life God wants you to live.

Why spend your money on food that does not give you strength? Why pay for food that does you no good? Listen to me, and you will eat what is good. You will enjoy the finest food. Come to me with your ears wide open. Listen, and you will find life. – Isaiah 55:2-3

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