This morning, I started my day as usual, drinking coffee and reading through daily devotionals and blog posts that had come into my email overnight. A post by Brandon Adams struck a chord. He had been working hard on himself, only to discover there was more to do.
“Perhaps we shouldn’t quail when we’re confronted with yet another task, wearying though our journey be,” he wrote. “Perhaps we should throw ourselves headlong into it without hesitation…”
Lately, it’s been one thing after another—you know how it goes. More family, more house, more church, more neighborhood commitments. Just when I think I’ve gotten a handle on things, God gives me another task to do.
It’s for my own good, I understand, to grow my faith. But when I’ve got a mission, I’m like a dog with a bone—focused on the task at hand. And I worry that poor bone, too. Sometimes I need to spend a little time outside, admiring the beauty of God’s creation, to keep things in perspective.
This week, it’s daylilies.
Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. Matthew 6:28b-29 (NLT)
Lilies are an ancient flower. They were revered by the Greeks and have the honor of being May’s birthday flower and the 30th wedding anniversary flower. The white lily symbolizes chastity and virtue—a symbol of the Virgin Mary. Lilies can represent friendship, devotion, sympathy, wealth, prosperity, humility, and devotion. “As the flowers most often associated with funerals, lilies symbolize that the soul of the departed has received restored innocence after death,” according to the teleflora website.
Timothy Keller’s July 14th entry in The Songs of Jesus: A Year of Daily Devotions in the Psalms referenced to Psalm 80: 3, 7.
Restore us, O God; make your face shine upon us, that we may be saved.
Restore us, God Almighty; make your face shine upon us, that we may be saved.
Keller writes, “To have light from God’s face (verses 3 and 7) is not just to believe in God but to experience his presence. It is also to have a life conformed to his, not merely by compulsion out of a sense of duty but by inner desire out of a sense of his beauty. Most believers live in the gray area between these two poles.”
Duty and Beauty. Amen to both.