Receiving gifts we don’t want.
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Orchids were never my favorite flower. They are too formal and most of their hues clash with my preferences.
Four years ago I received an orchid for my birthday. Magenta in color, I fought its presence, but could not help but be impressed with its long lasting blooms. When the flowers faded I was convinced it would not bloom again. I had a notion that orchids were high maintenance and the plant would stay four stiff green leaves forever. I hated magenta anyway. In the trash it went.
Thankfully, my oldest daughter rescued it. She researched how to care for orchids and found they are quite resilient. If given proper light and a water soak once in a while, it would lend its blooms again for several months. It simply needed long rest periods. I began to identify with these flowers as my life and spiritual rhythms seemed to be in sync with theirs.
Last year we received three more orchids on tender days that marked hope and healing for our family. These plants have become precious to us. God has continued to use them as symbols of hope and resilience. They remind us that God is in the circumstances we would never have chosen for ourselves, and that He will cause beauty to come through them.
Are there things God has brought into your life that you would not choose for yourself? Maybe it’s a relationship, job, or a hardship that you can’t imagine any beauty stemming from?
Are you willing to resist dumping the thing that seems to have no value? Maybe give it a little water and let it rest in His light? You may find that that thing which clashes with your preferences will result in blooms that are resilient and bold – a testimony to His faithfulness.
“Every good and perfect gift is from above,
coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights,
who does not change like shifting shadows.”
James 1:17 New International Version