The time of the iris’ blooming is over and now we look to the annuals in the garden to begin to make things colorful once again. One of the things that I am learning about yard work and gardening is that you have to just keep at it. When one thing finishes making the
yard look marvelous, spends it days and is no more, then it is time to have something else planted to take its place in the color department. Growing plants take time to envelop a garden. We must learn to wait on them, care for them and enjoy the journey. It is called diligence.
Diligence is not a word we know much about in our modern life-style, but this morning as I was taking my regular reading and prayer time with the Lord Jesus, He reminded me about a missionary I know. She was sent to a particular province in a far eastern nation to plant a church as that province did not have one. So she went full of excitement and encouragement to bring many to Christ and establish the local church.
She arrived and rented a house with a large front room. She turned that room into the meeting room, set it up like a church, piano and all. She advertised her service through-out the village and was excited for the day to come. The Sunday came that she had advertised that she would begin services. She lived in the back part of the house, so she came into the front part early to greet the people. The beginning time came and went, but the people did not come. So she sat down at the piano and began to worship the Lord. After the period of time she had planned for worship, she stood and delivered her message to the empty seats.
She continued doing this Sunday after Sunday, week after week, month after month. Even after she made friends and people knew who she was and what was happening, still no one came. Or so she thought. Since it was mild outside, she always had the windows open in the “church room.” She had no way of knowing that early in these months, the children of the neighborhood began to come under the open window to hear the songs and the stories. They were hidden from her view and were so quiet that she did not know they were there. At first it was the younger ones, then the older ones. By the time she discovered them, she had been having “church” for her supposedly empty chairs for almost two years.
When it came time for her to leave that post and go to her next missionary assignment, she was replaced with a dedicated couple who were to pastor her very special church full of people who loved the Lord.
The Lord has his ways of training us and of using us. She was diligent to do what the Lord told her to do, even when no one was there (she thought) to hear or take advantage of what she was doing. We never know who the Lord has listening. We are so prone to measure by money and numbers that we often miss what God is doing. He calls and empowers us to obedience and diligence in that obedience. So as we learn to rest in His call and His appointment, we learn the priceless secret of “diligence.” Or as the Bible would say “faithfulness.”
Thank you Lord that you measure things very differently that we do. Teach us to number our days only in You and allow You to measure out the results as supply. The harvest is always bountiful and never skimpy. Thank you Lord for such love and increase.
So as we look to flower beds (appointed work) not yet full of color. Let’s remember to be faithful to care for them (to be diligent in what has been assigned) and allow the Creator to make all beautiful with our small seed efforts. We have such a marvelous Lord!
4 thoughts on “To Everything – A Season”
Thank you Iris for continuing to be so faithful in God’s plan. I enjoy your writings very much. They lift my spirit and bring me hope.
Thank you Carol for reading and for the encouraging words. Bless you and yours.
I appreciate your encouragement using this missionary lady as an example. I am confident she was profoundly blessed in the preparation of her material and she was blessed in the personal worship of the Lord. In all seasons, we are blessed.
Consider the seasonal progression of your iris:
In late winter, the iris are covered with light-brown leaves from the previous year as a marvelous demonstration of the Lord’s protection of these precious beauties. Once this covering is removed in the early spring, the iris are like tiny pencils that poke their way through a paper. Soon they become like reeds, somewhat reminiscent of the palm reeds during Christ’s final entry into Jerusalem. The progression to the first opening can be rather quick, yet it can be a day before there is another, then a larger number, and so on until finally the last one is done blossoming. Each flower does not last long but the massing gives the gardener a longer time of enjoyment.
Some years the flowers are heavily pollinated which results in little bulb-like seed packages that sit on top of their long stems. These seed heads turn brown quickly although I usually I cut them off possibly too soon.
To the casual garden visitor, there are other flowering plants that become the point of the show; yet the whisky leaves of the iris continue to capture that day’s rays to store energy for the coming cooler times. The leaves are long, fairly firm and slowly tapered towards a terminal point at the end. The dark green color remains on the iris for a long time and it is often fairly free of insect damage.
The Lord has a way of providing for the iris just as it does for each of us. It may be winter to the plant but the past summers rain, sun and soil nutrients have given it what it needs to endure the harder times. In a similar way, we can praise our Jesus, for he is always there.
Thank you, Tom for the encouragement and iris information. Bless you.