Valentines Day fills our lives with flowers! God’s Word is quick to point out flowers’ fleeting nature, a perfect contrast to God’s Word which endures forever. Enjoy an excerpt from God’s Word for Gardeners Bible from the Flowering theme of devotions, with quoted insight from Debra Prinzing, author of Slow Flowers.
They spring up like flowers and wither away.
Job 14 :2
For all their beauty, the joy they bring and the faithfulness they stand for, flowers are known for their brief brilliance; flowers come and go, blooming in profusion and vanishing, petals scattering in the wind or falling to the ground (Isaiah 40:8). Does the Lord want us to dismiss flowers, disregarding their importance and scoffing at their fleeting nature? Hardly! For who can help but be delighted by a bright bouquet, and Jesus himself directed his followers to take note of the wildflowers (Luke 12:27 – 28).
Yet how do quick-to-wither blossoms lead us to the unfading beauty of God and his Word; how do they grow persevering, lasting qualities in us when they themselves do not last? Author Debra Prinzing found in her yearlong, faithful pursuit of creating a fresh bouquet each week from her garden that the capture of fast-fading flowers slowed her pace, naming her book Slow Flowers.
You can find local blooms in your or your friend’s garden or from the fields, meadows and farm stands of local flower growers. Each bouquet tells a story about one moment in time, about Grandmother’s cherished flower vase of the fleeting memory that returns with a whiff of lavender or lilac. That’s one of the intangible gifts of bringing flowers into our lives….A vase can be a little garden, its contents gathered and arranged to please the eye.
– Debra Prinzing, Slow Flowers, 2013
And so with flowering, we enjoy a paradox: Fleeting flowers help showcase the enduring ways of the Lord. Calyx, corolla, pistils, stamens and sepals come together in brilliant and ingenious combinations to draw the buzzing bees and humming birds near. They attract our attention, too — drawing us into the “intangible gifts” of spending quiet, personal time arranging each flower, considering individual blooms against a backdrop of foliage and filler, lingering a bit, creating a “little garden” in a vase, infusing the time-crunched landscape of our lives with meditative moments, taking in the wonder of it all.
Prayer: God, I don’t want to be a fleeting shadow (Job 14:2)! Fill me with your Word that endures forever (Isaiah 40:8); create in me your unfading beauty (1 Peter 3:4). Help me to enjoy moments before they wither, letting the inspiration I find in flowers lead me to deeper, lasting moments with you. Being transformed in my spirit to your likeness, Lord Jesus (2 Corinthians 3:18), ensures I will not wither and pass away (James 1:10).
Slow Flowers has grown and become more than a book! SlowFlowers.com is now an online directory for finding America’s flower farmers and the florists who design with American-grown, local flowers. Join Debra Prinzing in the Slow Flower Challenge, finding “local blooms…from the fields, meadows and farm stands of local flower growers” for all your floral needs, on Valentines’ Day and throughout the year.
©2015 Shelley S. Cramm Blooming begonias from Ruibal’s Garden Shop near Dallas’ Farmers Market