by Pastor Doc Adkins
“And yet I say unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” Matthew 6:29
If you take a look around our area, we see that the signs of spring and summer are all around. Grass is greener, trees have their leaves now, birds are singing, and folks are planting gardens and flowers.
Again, I remember growing up days on my grandparents’ farm and one of the things my grandmother always did was plant her flowers. You name it, she’d plant it. Ladies at church would swap flowers “starts” and at times get into a “budding feud” about who’s were the prettiest. Funny old women!
Flowers are one of the most beautiful things I think God created. Sometimes I think He created them just for to add some kind of beauty in an otherwise dirty world. They give us happier, peaceful views of life.. When I see how simple but yet how fantastic flowers are, I can’t help thinking that God is still in control and all is right with the world.
People have loved flowers back from the beginning of time and there are different meanings that have been associated with specific ones over the years. Many flowers have come to have several different meanings. We will take a look at just four of them to see what we can learn.
Aster – Contentment
Asters are those pretty little dainty white flowers that have a yellow center. I think they look like wild daisies. We have them growing along the roads here in WV.
One of the meanings associated with the aster flower is contentment. I kind of like that. They are simple yet pretty flowers and they do give me that sense of contentment. Those words in Philippians come to mind.
Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. Philippians 4:11
Contentment sure is a nice place to be in our lives. Isn’t it? No matter what the circumstances, we have that ease of satisfaction. The problem I think that people have with contentment is that they get it confused with being complacent. Complacent means we don’t care about things or are unconcerned, but being content is not that. When we are content, we end up caring more because we don’t allow things around us to get us off track. It’s being able to push forward and have that peace no matter what the circumstances.
Camellia – Graciousness
My grandmother had a lot of favorite flowers and Camellias are right there toward the top of her list. She had a large Camellia bush beside the front porch.
The meaning associated with the camellia is graciousness. I think that’s a word we don’t hear used much anymore and we certainly don’t see it displayed much.
It means excellence of manners or social conduct. Shouldn’t we as Christians embody that? The world sure doesn’t. I think if we want to be in full bloom as Christian people we really need to concentrate on being gracious. I have known a few very gracious Christian people in my life and to me that makes them quite breathtakingly beautiful.
A gracious woman retaineth honour… Proverbs 11:16
Larkspur – Beautiful Spirit
The Larkspur is a pretty flower. I’ve mostly seen them in purple but they can be other colors as well. One of the meanings associated with the
Larkspur is a “beautiful spirit”. Wow. That’s something to strive for. I’ve always loved that verse in 1 Peter where it is talking about a “meek and quiet spirit”.
One thing I read about the Larkspur is that some of them have become endangered and that you don’t find as many anymore except for those grown specifically for flower arranging. Kind of like those “meek and quiet spirit” people. There doesn’t seem to be an abundance of them either.
Black Eyed Susan – Encouragement
I’ve always admired the Black Eyed Susan. They are so bright and striking that I think they normally contrast everything around them. The meaning of the Black Eyed Susan is encouragement.
I sure love to be around encouraging people. Don’t you? People that give you that special word you need just at that moment or are there to cheer you on in whatever you are doing at the time. Those bright people definitely contrast with those around them.
Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do. 1 Thessalonians 5:11
Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. Ephesians 4:29
I think there are things in our Christian lives that we have to have like pretty flowers all lined up in a row. Things like these four- contentment, graciousness, meek spirits, and encouragement. There are other things too all involved in our Christian living such as love, compassion, and all those other things Christ taught us. When we have these things in order, we have a tendency to live our Christian lives in a more beautiful way.
No one ever said that the Christian life was easy and when it comes to some of these, it requires a little work. We can’t just put up our little place markers with our flower names on them and expect them to flourish if we leave them alone. They require us to put some energy into them by using those tools of Bible study, prayer, and righteous living.
So, are your flowers all in a row?