Anyone who’s ever grown a garden knows that tilling the soil and sowing seeds is just the beginning. Those conditions which make it possible for vegetables and fruit to grow are also just the right conditions for weeds and unwelcome plants to thrive. So we find that a major element of successful gardening is cultivation of the garden. Between seedtime and harvest comes the weeding, pruning, and watering that produce an abundant crop.
As with growing a garden, so it is with the life in Christ. Paul’s reminds the churches in Galatia the freedom we are given in Christ is just the beginning. There is a weed-choked part of each of us - what Paul calls the way of the flesh, which is contrary to the way of the Spirit of Christ. We are, in Paul’s view, like living gardens, and the Holy Spirit is the gardener. Giving in to natural, fleshly inclinations is likely to produce a harvest of weeds.
We are all like gardens, and all of us are producing some sort of crop or another. For those who who are guided by the Spirit, choosing Christ above all, the harvest will bring an abundance of love, joy, peace, and self-control.