If you came here looking gardening tips, I apologize, the title is figurative. You can find great gardening tips on A Pinch of Homestead; however, I don’t garden. I have a garden in the sense that I picked out pretty plants at the local Home Depot and occasionally turn on the sprinkler system to water them, but my husband dug the holes and planted them, and neither of us spends a whole lot of time tending to them. Just not my thing I guess. Honestly, it is so stinking hot here all growing season, that I kind of just want to be in the pool if I’m outside. Never been much of a hands in dirt kind of girl.
So what is this post about then?
I made business cards for my recent speaking engagement about a month ago. I used the bright sunshine yellow, sunflower design because something about it spoke to me. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I thought I remembered that sunflowers track the sunlight through the day. I liked that imagery of the flowers looking for the light, but when I sat down to write a post about it, I started to research the heliotropic properties of sunflowers, only to discover that it isn’t true.
I was so disappointed. In my mind, I had this beautiful image of we Christians striving to face God’s light in all circumstances. However, a field of sunflowers only appears to be facing the sun if the photographer takes the picture in the morning. In this beautiful picture from Rick Louie, we can clearly see all the flowers facing away from the setting sun.
Then I kept reading. Turns out the bud of the flower is heliotropic. The bud searches for the light from dawn until dusk. The stem is flexible allowing the bud to grow toward the sunlight.
Once the buds mature and bloom, the stems become firm. They can no longer track the sun all day; yet, the buds bloom facing east. They “learned” from which direction the light will come each morning.
And the metaphor I had pictured in my head paled in comparison to the one God had in mind.
I am writing this blog about raising my daughter to face Gods’ light, searching for Him in everything we do all day long. Right now, she is open-hearted, open-minded. She is searching for the light, but I want to make sure she finds the Light, so that she knows which way to face when she blooms. So that her face will reflect His radiance in the dawn, as I hope mine does today.
I am living everyday trying to be an example of God’s light for my daughter. Because children seek the light. Something in them inherently knows they need Jesus, and will look for His light around them. If there is any source of solid, continuous light in a child’s life, bright enough to combat the darkness, they will hang onto that light. They will seek it until they no longer can see it. I’ve seen students cling to me like that until too much darkness wipes away their ability to even remember what light looks like.
1 Corinthians 15:57-58 “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.”
She will have dark times in her life. Some will be darkness of her own making and some that just happens in a fallen world. But oh, to teach her to face towards the Son, to seek His face. For her to know victory in the Lord is my promise that my work with her is not in vain.
Psalm 30:5 ESV “For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.”
The joy of the morning sun gradually bringing life to a field of sunflowers feels like the perfect picture of redemption and grace in my heart, a celebration of facing the new day, leaving behind the darkness. I pray for my daughter to experience that joy for herself as she grows, but pray even more so completely on her own, just because she loves Him.
Today, I’m planting sunflowers, planting seeds in her heart. My little bud is in Son training, learning what light looks like, because when she blooms I want her to know which way is really facing the Light.