Dandelions and Roses

When you’re going through a rough patch, look for wildflowers. They pop up everywhere, even in rough terrain. A reminder that God scatters His gracious beauty in unexpected places, even in the midst of our hard times.

As Spring unfolds around us, God’s gift of nature provides an abundant refreshing of the spirit. I sit on my front porch and bask in the beauty of purple azaleas, dark red camelias, climbing red roses, and a single white rose from a small bush.  The colorful flowers accessorize tall pine trees, two swaying date palms, and the giant oak tree my husband Bill planted when our youngest son was born almost thirty-six years ago.  Along the side of the house, a few die-hard daffodils pop up every year, and in the back yard blue wisteria drips to the ground close to large pecan trees.  Other than the oak tree Bill planted and the transplanted rose bushes, a gift from a neighbor, all the other trees and plants were lovingly sown and nurtured by a previous owner many years ago. 

Bill and I do not have green thumbs, so I am thankful for the flowers and trees planted by a person whose thumb was very green indeed when our little cottage was much newer.  We are blessed to have color year-round because of the hardy camelias and the holly bush that pops out with red berries in the winter.

But it is all due to someone else’s hard work and diligence.

Wildflowers and dandelions spring up with only Nature’s assistance.  Flower beds and gardens need the human touch to plant, weed, fertilize, and water.  Still, God gives the rain.  God gives the sun.  God blesses the work of the sower.

I’m reminded of 1 Corinthians 3:6-7, “I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.”

I may never have the ability, metaphorically speaking, to grow a beautiful bouquet of soft yellow roses to present to someone in major need.  But perhaps, I can be like the dandelion.  A man may consider it a weed that messes up his lawn, but a child sees a bright yellow flower to give to Mommy or a white bit of fluff to blow on and make a wish. 

It’s not about us.  It’s about what God does through us.  So be the purple wildflower in the rough terrain that gives the weary hiker a lift.  Or be the gardener who creates a beautiful garden that all the world admires.  Or be the simple dandelion that entrances a little child.

However God chooses to use you to impact this world, let Him work through you . . . whether extravagantly or simply . . . because, though one may plant and another water, it is always God that produces the beautiful result in the lives of people to whom we reach out.

Here for a Reason – Ashes Remain

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