O Lord, nothing looked deader than the brown, shriveled seeds I planted last spring. But You breathed Your life into them, and now, a hundred colorful reminders of Your Resurrection dance for joy in the west wind. OMG, to think that You can do the same for us, if we let You. Alleluia!
This prayer was originally published on August 22, 2016.
O Lord, once upon a time, we were Bossy Big Sister and Ornery Baby Brother. You know perfectly well that hasn’t changed completely. But now, reunited after several years, OMG, thank You we can share a big hug.
This post first appeared on July 11, 2018.
Near our yard’s edges, orange lilies accentuate the breathtaking beauty of street signs: speed limit, street name, even dead end.
Surely no one deliberately planted flowers of such pathetic pedigree. These gangly commoners share none of the refinement of day lilies, their aristocratic cousins.
Whoever nurtured mine did not stop with signs. She/he invited them to surround the patio, where an army of orange sentinels stand at attention. Neither horizontal rain, windstorm, nor hail beat them down. Nothing short of a nuclear blast prevents their annual return.
I know this because their anonymous planter also nurtured them around our mailbox — until my husband, replacing it, obliterated the lily bulbs.
Undaunted, the invaders returned, only to be mowed down again and again. And again.
Stubborn? Worse than a gang of telemarketers.
Why, then, did I transfer orange lily shoots to a spot near our front door?
Um … maybe the gardener who introduced the lilies wasn’t so dumb. Perhaps, like me, she/he was desperate. I had nicknamed that flower bed the “Sahara.”
Morning glories, petunias, zinnias, marigolds — none of my usual stalwarts had survived it. Would I have to comb the Internet for Martian cacti?
Instead, I planted lily shoots. Three days later, they had not shriveled.
Gasp! What had I done?
Yet, I could not yank them. I just … kind of forgot to water them.
Finally, the hopeful sprigs disintegrated into yellow July dust. I could forget my embarrassing temporary insanity.
Until the following March. Tiny, green leaves stuck out, na-na-na-boo-boo tongues that grew into spindly plants.
How could I pull them? They have flourished unpampered.
I rarely talk to the lilies. Other plants do not socialize with them. We all fear they will take over the yard — maybe the world.
Though I wouldn’t mind if they conquered the crabgrass.
Vases chock full of lilies do brighten my mantels. My dining room table. My piano. …
All right, so my deep, dark secret is out.
I have plebian tastes. I like orange lilies.
These flowers scorn Better Homes and Gardens ratings. They grow in vacant lots, parking lots, behind Big Lots. Their determination to cover their world with beauty knows no limits.
I must have passed down my plebian tastes to a daughter. Scorning roses for her senior picture, she held a cluster of orange lilies.
Funny, her people bouquets consist of the unsung, too. She gathers needy children, cherishing beauty bypassed by others. Maybe the wealth of orange lilies edging her fence inspire her days.
As mine should.
Anyone blessed with orange-lilyfied street signs — even a dead-end one — is bound to see her world in a beautiful way.
Your Extraordinary Ordinary: What “plebian” flowers do you like?
O Lord, You know that once upon a time, my cousins and I were less than saintly — especially, together. But OMG, we’ve come a long way. Um … we have, haven’t we?
Lord, how can a person get lost in her hometown? Yet You helped me find and feast on lasagna with these friends with whom I once read Dick and Jane books. Played jacks and hopscotch at recess. Graduated from high school. OMG, what a fun evening You gave us — together again!
O Lord, Thank You for our garden’s superior squash production — I think. Anticipating dead-in-the-night porch gifts to unsuspecting friends and neighbors, I wonder how Adam and Eve coped with Eden’s abundance. OMG, maybe in that perfect garden, squash grew and ripened one at a time?
O Lord, thank You for a husband who loves Your creation. But given his enthusiasm for a trail like this, OMG, has he taken out a life insurance policy on me that I don’t know about?
O Lord, thank You for a blue-sky, storybook day when we picked strawberries with hard-working grandchildren. But when Grandma nearly set their house on fire while baking soupy pies, OMG, thank You that they — and our daughter — still love me.
O Lord, You know I spent many summer nights, sitting on hard bleachers, watching our baseball-crazy son and his team play T-ball. I slapped at mosquitoes and applauded every player (“Yay! You only missed that catch by 20 feet!”). OMG, You didn’t tell me that one day, I would watch my son coach his son too.