On my “About” page, I wrote a little about why I chose the name that I did and why I love the floral analogy. I choose it really, because I simply love flowers, and the floral analogy fits the many facets of my life. The sweet scent of roses is almost heavenly to me, and certain scents can immediately transport me back to special moments with loved ones who have since passed on. One of my fondest childhood memories, is laying under my great-grandmother's gloriously blooming dogwood tree, inhaling the fragrances from all of her flowers and looking up at a blue, blue sky peering through the branches! She loved flowers, and I loved getting to go to her house and wandering through her roses! And to this day, roses are my favorite! I also remember, stern as she was, her occasionally pulling me up on her lap to read scripture and how it made her countenance change. That’s what hope does, you know - and the loss or dawning of it can totally transform us! And maybe that’s also why she loved flowers so?
Hope (or the loss of it) is why so many people are struggling right now. But, I want to encourage you - reader, that no matter where you are, no matter what is going on… there. is. hope. Our world tells us there is too much darkness, that we can never have real joy, that we are divided, are the sum of our mistakes, and that we are useless or life is pointless. That is not what the God who created us says. In fact, His Word tells us we have hope and a purpose, we can overcome the dark that is out there, and we can be made new! The Bible calls him the God of all hope (Rom. 15:13) and says in Hebrews 6:17-19 that because of him we have hope to anchor (keep) our souls!
Because I love flowers, I love the allegory in Matthew 6:30, where Jesus said, "if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers...he will certainly care for you.". It is one of my favorite verses. A verse that has kept me through some of the toughest times of my life - like when our micro-preemie son coded for the third (and most scary) time while in the NICU. This verse tells us that He clothes and cares for us lovingly in every season of our lives - triumph, new beginnings, heartache… His love and care are always there for us. And not only does he love and care for us through difficult times but, one of the most amazing things is, that through it, he can restore and renew our purpose.
Another of my favorite verses, became a favorite during a period that I was going through a particularly tough time. I was reading in 2 Corinthians when, I came upon verses that caught my attention because it mentioned the term fragrance, in fact, it says that we are a sweet fragrance. 2 Corinthians 2:14, 15 says: “But I thank God, who at all times makes us a vision* in The Messiah and reveals the fragrance of his knowledge by us in every place. For we are a sweet fragrance to God in The Messiah among those who have life and among those who perish.” A floral fanatic, I have always been captivated by the idea of how a fragrance is made so, immediately I thought of the different processes a flower must endure in order for its fragrance to be used as part of something new. The pressing or distillation gives the flower it a new purpose. This verse describes our primary purpose in this life as believers and through Paul’s allegory of fragrance, it’s easy for me to draw a connection to flowers. This is what a pressed and true faith can do, offer hope and lead others to the loving care of Christ. As Christians, we talk a lot about being the hands and feet of Jesus. During this current atmosphere, how about we go offer this world His hope through acts of love, kindness and encouragement. Let’s act right(justly), love kindness(mercy), and continue to walk humbly before our God.