Call me crazy. No call me a gardener. Last year it was veggies. This year, flowers – sunflowers specifically.
The seeds I bought were plump and promising and I eagerly planted them in my 4’ x 8’ backyard garden. I love that I can see it from my office window. My carnations keeled over but that hasn’t deterred me from admiring the beauty of what did survive – the Evening Sun and Mammoth varieties of sunflowers.
Weeks went by after the planting and I like it that way. Very low maintenance is perfect for this season in my life. In the past 6 weeks, the school year ended, I survived my first full year as a middle school teacher, summer came and severe sickness arrived in my family. There was no time for tending flowers.
I pack my bags and head for my sister’s for four days – wanting to see her but anxious about reality.
“Your sunflowers are about to bloom,” my husband announces in a news bulletin sort of way right before I leave.
“Good,” I acknowledge. “I could use a little sunshine.”
When I return I see proof. I see blossom after blossom after blossom!
Not only did the blossoms beckon me, they made me smile – something I hadn’t done in several weeks. These
sunflowers remind me of Christina, a beautiful woman who hired me as a preschool teacher during my transition from fulltime mom to the next step in life. They remind me of strength because those seed packets promised they’d grow to be at least 6 feet tall and they did. And they remind me that God’s best work is probably done in the dirt – of the earth and in my life.
Today I count more than 15 sturdy sunflower plants proudly parading their blossoms. I might be hallucinating – but I think the tallest might actually rotate somewhat during the day seeking out the most direct sunlight available. Maybe they don’t but just humor me here.
Let’s say that they do.
I think I could learn a lesson. Search for the sun, the Son. It almost seems as if an invisible “tractor beam” (ok, now you know I was a Trekkie) holds them in concert with the best rays at different times.
Recently, my family chose to memorize a Scripture from The Bible. It’s from the book of Hebrews, chapter 10, verse 25.
It says: Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess for He who promised is faithful.
I like that verb – unswervingly.
The life of my family has taken a large swerve lately and I’m beginning to think that if those sunflowers have it figured out when it comes to getting what they need from the source, I could take a lesson from them. Keep focused and connected.