Thursday, May 28, 2009

Seeds and Weeds

I mentioned in my last blog how the girls and I had planted flowers from seed and transplanted them. There is just something extraordinary about doing it this way. Sure, it is so easy to buy the plants already grown, but then you skip all of the hope and faith that goes into putting a seed in the ground and waiting to see what it will become. Or if it will become at all.

When we planted our seeds, the girls and I would go out each day and examine the ground for any emerging sprouts. Sometimes, in our eagerness to believe our seeds had grown, we would see any sign of life and think it was our plant. Usually it was nothing more than a weed. No matter how much we wanted it to be one of our plants, we just couldn't make it be so.

I think I do that in life, too. Sometimes there are things that I want so badly to sprout and take on life. I watch and wait. Then it happens - something sprouts up! Hooray! But how many times do I not recognize it for the weed it is? "It can't be a weed," I tell myself, "I've wanted this for so long!" And so I go on convincing myself and trying to squash down that nagging feeling that it might be a weed afterall. When will I learn?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009


At this time of year there is often a lot of transplanting going on. My household is certainly not the exception. Actually, we've had three rounds of transplanting recently.

The first group looked amazing the next day, but slowly deteriorated thereafter. Most are still hanging in there as their roots gain new footing in foreign soil. Some looked to be in dire straits, but seem to be perking up and recovering. I am now noticing greener leaves and new shoots growing. They proved to be resilient.

The second group met calamity as they overnighted in my house. Our cat had a grand time chomping on leaves and knocking over the one that was in water. I had been so excited to receive them, too. Definitely not the way I wanted things to go down with my prized possessions.

I just finished transplanting the third group. Unlike the others, these little guys were sown from seed in a little clementine box. We had lined the bottom with dead leaves to keep the dirt from spilling out and to help moisture stay put. We watched them expectantly and were overjoyed when the first sprouts appeared. They kept coming and coming! Unfortunately, as they grew, they began to get crowded. Things were definitely getting cramped in that little clementine box. It was time to separate them before they would no longer thrive.

I lovingly dug them out and transplanted them in a variety of pots and areas in our flower beds. There were so many of them! My daughter and I kept referring to them as if they were people. "This little guy needs some more support. I think he will do well if we put him here - don't you think? Don't put him too deep or he might not do well." Before long I began thinking about how I will be transplanting my children into the world before long.

Like the third group, I waited for them and rejoiced with their arrival. I watched them grow and provided them with the things they needed to do well. I have tried not to be careless with them like I was with the second group, bringing things upon them that would harm them. They are growing, for sure, and soon they will need more room. It will be time for them to strike out on their own.

Inevitably my mind wonders how their transplanting will go. Will they be like the first group? Will they strike out on their own, full of zeal, only to wither under the pressures to come? I do not know how it will happen, but I do know that God is faithful. He loves my children even more than I do, and I can trust Him to take care of them. And, if the transplanting does leave them withered at first, He is able to revive and restore.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Strange requests

Earlier today I had noticed some kind of flowers growing on the side of the road when I was out and about. I noticed them once again on the way to church. On the way home I asked my teen son if he would get out of the car and bring some to us so we could identify it. Son #1 was a no go. Son #2, however, was game. Cool! We dropped him off and circled the car around to swing back and pick him up. As we approached him standing on the side of the road waiting for us, I had to smile to myself. What a strange request I had made of him, and yet he didn't consider it to be strange at all. The girls OOOHED and AAAHED over the prize that accompanied him into the back seat. The flowers ended up being pinkish, not the white color that they had appeared to us as we sped by. Another reminder to me that things are not always as they seem. The mystery flower's name? Daisy fleabane. The kids will probably always remember its name from now on. Who knows? Perhaps they'll carry on with them the memory of tonight's strange request. Just maybe they'll smile to themselves years from now when they encounter the same flower.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The beauty of simplicity

When I closely inspect most flowers I am blown away by all of the little intricacies in their design. Nothing simple about most any flower - the Lord really went all out when He made them. Amazing! As I worked in my tiny garden today, I couldn't help but ponder this.

As I looked over our garden, I suddenly became keenly aware that it didn't much resemble anything you'd see pictured in a magazine. All at once it seemed to be lacking in so many ways. I shouldn't have been surprised to find those thoughts lurking in my mind. Afterall, society tends to lean towards the philosophy that MORE is better. That is rarely the case, though.

Sometimes LESS is better. Less keeps me humble. Less helps me to work on being content in every circimstance. Less helps me appreciate more and expect less. Less gives me the opportunity to trust Him each and every day to meet my needs. Living a life of simplicity can be a very beautiful thing.

He has made everything beautiful in its time. (Ecclesiates 3:11a)

For love is a flower...

This begins one of my favorite quotes. I came upon it last summer while reading Little Men to my girls, and I was immediately struck by its beauty. I have SO enjoyed studying wildflowers with them lately. I cannot believe how much we have learned and the memories we have made. There is just something so satisfying about walking with them and hearing them tick off the names of the plants. Or to see them get excited about something they've found or a picture they've taken. I cannot even begin to touch upon how much I enjoy this. It is neat to me that this quote fittingly links love and flowers. While I've studied flowers it has made me think a lot about love. The love God has for us, the love I have for my kids, the love I have for the beauty of His creation..... I could go on, but I'll end with the entire quotation.

"For love is a flower that grows in any soil, works its sweet
miracles undaunted by autumn frost or winter snow, blooming fair
and fragrant all the year, and blessing those who give and those
who receive" (Little Men 369).

What's in a name?

Well I finally have a name. For three days I have been thinking about it. Even had a list going, but nothing was quite right. Ironically, I've been listening to a song over and over again each of the days that I've been thinking about my blog name. It is called, Speak To Me, by Audio Adrenaline.

It all clicked when I came upon the following verse:

Job 12:7‑10
But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds of the air, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish of the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this? In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.

How awesome! Thank You, Lord. You are so good to me. Yes, I want You to speak to me every day. I will listen.