by Emily Conrad
I’ve heard the morbid take on bouquets that there’s no point in enjoying cut flowers because they’re all dead as soon as they are clipped from the plant. Though I didn’t need much encouragement to enjoy cut flowers anyway, I picked one little flower recently that proved this perspective wrong.
We arrived home from vacation on Tuesday, July 30th, and I picked myself a bouquet of zinnias from my flower garden. Some of the blooms have died off in the month since, but a few remain vibrant and cheery. One has accomplished a feat I’ve never seen a cut flower undertake before.
It is growing roots.
This is the first year I’ve planted zinnias. Perhaps if you grow them and keep them around your house, you’ve seen this happen before. However, it’s the first time I’ve seen a cut flower sprout roots, so I see the development as a striking reminder to hope.
Odds are, when you pick flowers, they will last for a week or two, then die. But sometimes the odds are wrong. Sometimes, flowers last much longer. Sometimes, they grow roots.
Odds in other circumstances are stacked against us, too. But sometimes, the odds are wrong.
After all, it’s not the odds we depend on. It’s our Heavenly Father who loves us so much, He sent His Son to pay the price for our sins.
In Him, we have hope in all things.
And we know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose – Romans 8:28, NET
God is good, He loves us, and He can do anything.
I’ve seen Him bring good out of difficult situations.
Still, this doesn’t mean everything will always work out just the way we want, even as believers. Jesus warned His followers to expect trouble in this life (John 16:33).
Among other difficulties we face, we’re not that unlike cut flowers ourselves. Each of us have numbered days. Like a vase, this world is not a forever home. We won’t find true satisfaction or true hope here apart from Christ. That’s why, like that zinnia, we need to be growing roots.
I pray that […] Christ will dwell in your hearts through faith, so that, because you have been rooted and grounded in love, you will be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and thus to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you will be filled up to all the fullness of God.
Ephesians 3:16-19, NET
When rooted in Christ’s love, we are satisfied in the best way possible.
Through faith and relationship with God, we have hope in the worst circumstances, hope even in death.
“I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live even if he dies, and the one who lives and believes in me will never die.” Words of Jesus, John 11:25b-26a, NET
God alone can sustain us through the trials of this life and transplant us to eternity in His presence.
As intrigued as I am by that zinnia, perhaps the analogy is imperfect.
My point is simply this: Through Jesus, we have hope, even in the worst circumstances. When we believe in Him, we are secure in life or in death.
As for my zinnia, I think I’ll reward its valiant, hopeful roots by potting it in soil to see what happens next.
PS – I was on Seriously Write earlier this week. You can read “Writing: A Worthwhile Risk” here.
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