I think it grabbed my attention because just a while back there were rows and rows of flowers and this one was standing there all alone. My mind went off on its own rabbit trail when I saw it.
My first thought was how it was alone with no other flowers around it to add or detract from its beauty. But then I thought about all that it takes for this single plant to survive. Maybe that small cluster of flowers thinks its all alone in this small, but harsh wilderness; but there is a more than what meets the eye.
Many elements come together for this little flower. The leaves use the process of photosynthesis to keep the flower alive and the stem helps it stand tall so the sun and leaves can do their work. And there is an entire root system underground supporting this little guy and supplying it nutrients just so it can bloom, just so I can enjoy its beauty while I am out on a run! And besides all that there is the process of pollination going on to make sure this and other flowers have what is needed to survive. Nature has multiple systems going on that help keep this flower alive and beautiful.
Sometimes the caregiver can feel all alone and deserted. All the other flowers are enjoying each other's company in a different location but this one just stands here. Social isolation is one of the most crucial areas the caregiver has to deal with and it's real. We find our lives redefined by our social activities or the lack thereof and it can be a very lonely place.
When we look at this plant, we don't see the harsh, cold spring it endured. We don't see the dry spells it lived through during the hot summer. And we don't see how it lays over in the strong Oklahoma winds or how it endured the last tornado. And we can't see the entire system God has in place just to make it shine.
When God looks at us though - He knows. He knows about those long sleepless nights, the loneliness we endure, our fears, and all the other things that we fight day in and day out as we care for our loved ones. And He sees the beauty of the flower the troubles have produced. I couldn't see anything this flower endured - I only saw its beauty today. That's how He sees us. The flower has no idea how beautiful it is or that it made me stop and smile today - but it did.
My meditation today will be on how He gives us beauty for ashes. I'll turn my thoughts to how He loves us and how He sees beauty in us even when we feel like we are dry and living in the midst of a wilderness. I'll think about how His heart smiles when He looks at us...because he sees us blooming, beautiful and standing tall in faith. Will you join me?