It’s beautiful. The petals are white and the middle is golden yellow. There is a dash of pink coming from the center. It is simple but somehow it holds a complex lesson.
It is vulnerable. It is weak. It is small. But it brings joy. It is a gift. It is a thing of beauty. And it is a symbol of love. For Valentine's day, one of the preferred gifts among most is a bouquet of flowers.
When flowers appear on the earth it is the season of singing and celebrating - it signifies renewal, life, growth and harvest. Flowers give off fragrance and fruit when they are healthy. It is an invitation to others to come and enjoy - to taste and delight in the beauty and abundance. Flowers are a sign of growth and nourishment to come.
Yet often in scripture we are compared to flowers in another sense - referencing them mostly as being ephemeral objects. We are told that like the grass we will wither and be blown away. We are here today and gone tomorrow. We are temporary. Short lived. That seems to be the fate of both flowers and mortals.
But then we are also told that because of Christ, we are reborn of an imperishable seed. This one will not produce growth to simply be thrown into the fire or blown across the fields and wither up. God changes the narrative. Nature’s course is altered. Our destiny is no longer the same.
Scripture explains in 1 Peter 1:22-25 :“Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart. For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God. For, “All people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord endures forever.”
We are still flowers - beautiful symbols of love - but now we are born of imperishable seed. We are not of the kind that wither and produce no fruit. We now produce lasting fruit. Lasting beauty. Lasting growth.
We are placed here by the Master Gardener as a symbol of His love, for the purpose of loving. God himself will weed and feed and fertilize and shine upon us so that all we need to do is delight in the sunshine, soak in the rain and flower away, reflecting the beautiful tender loving care of God’s touch and the newness of our roots that spring from the imperishable seed of Jesus Christ. We are made a beautiful symbol of His imperishable love for us all.
- Kelly Joyce (a contributing member of the Crown of Beauty community)