Monday, April 2, 2012

Considering the Bluebonnets

And why do you worry about clothes? Learn how the wildflowers of the field grow: they don’t labor or spin thread. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was adorned like one of these! If that’s how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and thrown into the furnace tomorrow, won’t He do much more for you—you of little faith?
Matt. 6:28-30, HCSB
My dear husband took last week off work for his birthday and to finish up a nagging home maintenance project. As we drove to his birthday supper, we saw them: fields of bluebonnets quite near our home. Last year I searched and searched for our state flower in my small sphere, but to no avail. The record-breaking drought kept the bluebonnets away.

This year abundant spring rains have yielded abundant wildflowers. Such a trove so accessible proved irresistible. My pain level has been up these last two weeks and my energy down, but I asked the Lord that night for a chance to play in the flowers and bring home some pictures. The next morning I awoke without any pain for the first time in recent memory; the respite didn't last, but neither did I waste the opportunity.

As I arrived at the site, high school students strolled by, laden with their heavy packs and  hoodies. One pair asked as they passed me, wrapped in all my sun-protective clothing and crouched in the flowers, whether I was a professional photographer or just taking pictures for fun. Do professionals take a point-and-click to photo shoots? I grinned and said just for fun, which it was.

The fields of blue rejoiced my heart, and wordless gratitude bubbled over in me as I basked in the beauty, listened to the drone of happy bees around my ankles, and attempted unsuccessfully to achieve a good shot of a ladybug spiraling up and down the stalk of one flower.

Another pair, this time an older woman and her husky dog, approached. When the woman made eye contact, I effused, "Aren't they just gorgeous this year?" Her gaze sharpened, examining me, before she replied, "What? Oh. Sure." Then she hurried on her way.

The dog at her side pranced through the bluebonnets wearing the biggest grin I've ever seen on a husky.

The nonchalance stunned me. Perhaps weeks of walking through fields of beauty have desensitized her; perhaps she had had a particularly hard day at work and just wanted to be alone with her thoughts and not interrupted by a crazy camera-wielding stranger. I don't know and have no basis to criticize or judge her for not sharing my enthusiasm.

Looking to myself, however, I must wonder: where have I become calloused to God's glory through frequent use? When was the last time I marveled at His handiwork in the person created in His image who sits next to me at breakfast? Am I truly cognizant and grateful for the daily grace of a roof over my head and plenty of food in the house for a week, not just today? Where have I begun to take for granted the miracle of the manna of God's morning mercies?

Jesus told His hearers on the mountain to study the birds and wildflowers that they might not be anxious but trust God's superlative care. That's really what these Monday gatherings are about, is it not? Slowing to treasure and count a scant smattering of God's abundant blessings, slowing to acknowledge Him as God and give Him thanks allows gratitude to peel back a layer of the callouses that harden our hearts to His goodness.

With that, let me return thanks to the God who clothes the wildflowers and cares so well for me:
~a productive week off for Allen
~fresh coat of paint on the whole of the house
~sympathetic words from my doctor and another referral to possible help with pain management
~an unexpected opportunity to offer a listening ear and a hug to a pharmacist for whom I've been praying regularly
~brick-oven pizza date for my honey's birthday
~waking up one morning without any pain for the first time in many months
~bluebonnets and the opportunity to spend time in them
~short-lived respite from pain
~sweet notes by mail and email from bloggy friends
~bragging on you all to my doctor
~an Easter lily trumpeting hope again
~one trumpet bloom opening in the silence while we were at church
~a visit with my grandmother (answered prayer)
~more bluebonnets and Indian paintbrush along the highway embankments
~first rose blooming out in the garden
~more birthday cake with my dad
~words of encouragement given and received after church
~body telling me to slow down
~a nest of nine duck eggs at the pond
~birds serenading us, reminding me of a friend and all our reasons to praise their Maker
~prayers for a friend struggling through an infection that's impairing her recovery from final breast cancer surgeries (hard eucharisteo)
~the Palm Sunday reminder of Jesus' freedom from the pressure to meet our expectations, even though it provoked the temple leadership to send Him to His death (fulfilling Scripture in spite of themselves)
~His supremacy over all things on earth and in heaven (Colossians 1-2)
(from the gratitude journal, #5319-5341)

Thank *you* for your kind comments. Although I have done poorly in responding to them of late, I do read and treasure each one. Your names accompany my days as the Lord brings you to mind for prayer. Grace to you in Jesus the crucified and risen Lord.


  1. Oh my goodness... how beautiful!

  2. Aren't they though? Thanks for joining the celebration. Love to you, friend.

  3. these are just beautiful...counting has awakened me to all His beauty in the past...I would have just driven by a field like i too would stop just to drink it all in more deeply. blessings~

  4. I know just what you mean. Thank you for stopping by and for your kind words. Grace to you in Jesus today!

  5. Yes, it was your blue bonnet photo that first captured my attention - "someone who understands - must be from Texas" went through my mind...then I saw it was yours...thanks for sharing this glimpse into your day and heart! The bluebonnets are thick at our place, too. I take walks through them several times a day....I don't want to walk quickly by His graces either...

  6. Oh, how wonderful! I'm so glad you're taking advantage of having them right there at home. Thank you for coming by and for sharing the delight with me. We were in FW last week to see my grandmother and the prettiest spreads were actually along the highway. We didn't dare pull over on that busy stretch of highway, but I did shoot some photos out the window. :)

  7. Those blue bonnets ARE breathtaking!

  8. You saw Anne's photos, right? Her drive took her through the heart of bluebonnet country, where the absolute best drifts are. God does amazing work. :)

  9. What a lovely, heart-felt list! And what glorious flowers!! They do feed our spirits, don't they? Love you, dear one. :)

  10. Thank you, Anne. Love you, too.

  11. This is one way to stay tender to the gifts He gives, isn't it? Counting them out? NOticing? YOur bluebonnets are absolutely gorgeous. Such a feast for the eyes.

  12. Oh! So beautiful! That second photo especially--a river of blue, a whole feast of His beauty laid right at your feet. Praising Him for that one day without pain, an answered prayer, a chance to breathe Him in. I can just hear the bees buzzing and see the ladybugs traveling happy. Praying this referral will give you more respite from the pain in the very near future. Thank you, Dear Friend, for prayers and companionship on the long road. May His Grace gird you up in these hard days of weakness and pain. Love to you.

  13. I don't know that I've ever seen bluebonnets in person. These photos are stunning! Your opening scripture sets the stage perfectly. Lovely list, even if I am belated in my reading.


Thank you for sharing your day with me! Your presence here is a gift. *You* are a gift. Right now I am unable to reply to every comment, but please know I read and pray for each and every commenter. Grace and peace to you in Christ.