My husband will go above and beyond to see to it that my greatest desires are met. He is a servant and leader in the image of our God, challenging me and cultivating spiritual growth. However, we are newlyweds who attempt to live frugally with a need to build up a savings account. We’ve got BIG dreams we want to see come into fruition, and we know that where there is no vision, the people perish. My husband will go above and beyond to see to it that my greatest desires are met, but he often gently reminds me of these bigger pictures when I start hinting around at the smaller desires of my heart.
Among my favorite parts of getting married, very high at the list, is the GORGEOUS bouquet of flowers I received. Even if I only got to hold them for maybe three minutes before sadly parting and going our own ways…it to sit on a countertop and I to honeymoon in Gatlinburg.
I like flowers.
Every time we pass by the bouquets in Walmart and Rouses, I bat my pretty little eyelashes, I say “Baby…“, and then I state what I know my husband is thinking. “We can’t eat the flowers. We can’t keep the flowers. They will eventually die. This is $5 that we can spend on groceries we actually need. We’ll be $5 closer to owning our first home or $5 closer to flipping houses or $5 closer to my brother’s in St. Thomas…”
So imagine my UTMOST joy when, after going on six months of marriage, Mark told me to pick one out one day while we were shopping. It took us nearly five minutes to pick a bouquet out and leave. They were just ALL so pretty in their own way! …Except for the spray-painted neon ones, but we won’t talk about those…
We chose the deep red carnations. I’m picky about carnations, but with this particular color (that mimicked our wedding color perfectly!) the bouquet was gorgeous. When we got home, I trimmed the stems, tied a white ribbon around them, and stared at their beauty.
One of the reasons we chose this bouquet outside of its beauty was because there were many buds still yet to bloom, so we figured these would last a while. And that they did. It’s been over a week, and we still have beautiful flowers in our formal sitting room!
They’ve lost their vibrancy. A few are beginning to wilt. But still, others are only now beginning to bloom.
Perhaps flowers are too impractical or feminine for you, but what about the majestic oak? Or the magnificent red woods? What simply leaves you in awe? What glorious creation just does it for you?
You see, I couldn’t help but think about my vase of flowers this morning as I read the first epistle of Peter. Verses 24-25 read:
For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away. But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word by which the gospel is preached unto you.” (King James Version)
As gorgeous as these flowers are, they will die.
In college, I wrote a flash fiction piece called “Withered.” I used flowers as a metaphor for the human life. They can be so beautiful and breath-taking. They can be powerful, even. Goodness knows I’m grateful for plants like lavender and aloe vera, for example! But from the moment these precious flowers are picked and given to another person–as a gesture of endearment and affection, at that–they are dying. They’ve been plucked from their life-source. So you enjoy them while you can. Take pictures. Breathe in the sweet, gentle fragrance. Then you toss the dried up plant into the trash. Or press petals between pages of a thick book. Or hang them upside down. I had a roommate who did that.
The most precious, endearing, and glorious thing on this earth that we can appreciate and think of will fade. It will not last. Much less will it ever outshine God Almighty. Because after all, how can the creation out-glory the Creator?
Peter is here comparing the brevity of human life to the flower of the field. Time is precious to us, but the God we serve exists beyond the dimension of time!
Let’s be conscious of the glory and awesomeness of our Mighty God, and let’s be quick to redeem the time for it is oh so fleeting!
But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light. Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light. See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. (Ephesians 5:13-17)
I encourage you to read past verse 17 during your quiet time if you are seeking the Father’s heart and desire to know what the will of the Lord is…or if you simply wish to shake away from the King James and read it in a simpler translation.
My challenge for you is to remember the word of the Lord. What promises has He spoken over your life? What word of hope or vision has He planted within you? What truth has others shared from Scripture that has forever shaken you to your core (in a good way)? The gospel that transformed you from within and that has brought you from darkness and into light is the same, yesterday, today, and forever, and it readily stands available to all who embrace it…to all who embrace Him. Remember that the word of the Lord endures forever.