The Creed of Crabgrass

Crabgrass knows what it needs to grow.

The ubiquitous green annual’s requirements are as follows:

1. Soil that’s been at 55-65 degrees Fahrenheit for a few days in a row.

2. Plenty of open space.

3. Little water.

4. Lots of sunlight.

With these criteria met, crabgrass enlarges up and out at a nearly unstoppable velocity. To the annoyance of gardeners the world over, a single crabgrass plant can produce north of 150,000 seeds in a season, leaving its backyard colleagues in the dust. Or soil, as it were.

If crabgrass had a creed, it would be that of 19th century theologian and writer John Henry Cardinal Newman:

“Growth is the only evidence of life.”

Crabgrass has overpowering evidence of life because it knows what it needs to grow.

It’s worth asking ourselves: Do we know what we need to grow? What inputs do we require to enlarge up and out?

Perhaps it’s a little water and lots of sunlight, days spent in the mountains or on the lake, opening an unread book, or regular blocks of unscheduled time. Whatever form it takes, these inputs are the raw materials of our growth. And they deserve our respect and our time.

Evidence of our life doesn’t lie in projects finished or brass rings grabbed. But in our constant walk forward into the enormity of who we can be. And the discovery, again and again, of who we are.

Like crabgrass, we were born to grow. And like crabgrass, when we get growing, our velocity is nearly unstoppable.

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