Tenacious. Not a word typically associated with flowers, but one I’d deem most appropriate. While beautiful, delicate, or colorful may seem a more suitable description, flowers must be tenacious to survive the harsh landscapes of earth.
Think of the wars, the famines, the storms and disasters, the fires that ravage and devastate our land. And yet, the flowers still bloom.
Have you ever considered the vast beauty that surrounds us, not only in flowers, but in trees and hills, mountains and valleys, rivers and seas, canyons and waterfalls? Have you ever appreciated the exquisite uniqueness of each animal that graces air, sea, and land? And does it ever confound you that each of these exist despite the surrounding death and decay? The evils of earth pale in comparison to the beauty which prevails.
I once heard the story of two men in prison, one who gazed hopelessly at the brick wall beside his bed, the other who spoke unceasingly of the landscapes beyond. The hopeless man began to believe the other was given a better lot in life, until that man perished. The now empty bed revealed both men had the same view all along, only one had trained his eyes in a different direction.
When we live with our eyes trained on suffering, our lives become laden with despair. We may become convinced we have nothing to live for. But when we train our eyes beyond, we see there is so much more.
I found this quote in a book I was reading this week: “In Paradise Lost, John Milton compares the evil of history to a compost pile—a mixture of decaying substances such as animal excrement, potato skins, egg shells, dead leaves, and banana peels. If you cover it with dirt, after some time it smells wonderful. The soil has become rich, natural fertilizer and is tremendously well suited for growing fruits and vegetables—but you have to be willing to wait—years, in some cases. Milton’s point is that the worst events of human history—those that we cannot understand—even hell itself—are compost in God’s wonderful eternal plan. Out of the greatest evil, the death of Jesus, came the greatest good” (Peter Scazzero).
Everything which would seek to steal beauty from this world and joy from our lives is compost for the greater things to come. Every tear is a seed sown, the ground watered for greater things to come.
All the horrors of history, all the tragedies of today are nothing compared to the glory God will one day reveal. His son Jesus Christ died on the cross to make all things new.
Yes, there is suffering. Yes, there is evil. Daily, we’re bombarded with news we’d rather shut our eyes and ears to.
Yet still, there is beauty, tenacious beauty. Where there is beauty, there is hope. And if there is hope, there is reason to live.
Photo Credit: Free photo: Flowers, Nature, Flowers For – Free Image on Pixabay …
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