I’ve always loved tulips. They’re one of my favorite flowers. Fresh tulips in a vase always bring me joy. My husband, Chad, and I were recently near our kitchen window, and he asked me if I had noticed the surprise he had for me. I admitted I didn’t know what he was referring to. Then, he pointed them out. Last fall, unbeknownst to me, he planted tulip bulbs along our patio that I could enjoy from my favorite spot on the back deck. They were just about ready to bloom, and I was thrilled! This simple act proved to be more than just a burst of color. I’ve learned a couple of lessons from these tulips.
Sometimes, the gift is delayed.
Chad placed the bulbs in the ground months ago. Autumn leaves fell, then winter covered the ground with frost. The earth took a half a trip around the sun before the gift revealed itself. Today is often referred to as “Holy Saturday”, the day following the crucifixion of Jesus. This was the day He was assumed dead in the tomb. It felt like winter. It was cold and dark; a day marked by hopelessness and fear. People wondered what was to come. But, God knew tulips would spring forth. God knew that Easter was coming!
Sometimes, the gift needs to be pointed out.
Going about my business, focusing on the tasks of the day, I was clueless to the fact that the love of my life had a beautiful gift just in my line of sight. Especially during this time of quarantine, I can get overly focused on the darkness. There is so little I can control, and so much unknown. How bad will this get? Will someone I love get sick? When can we gather with others again and try to develop our new normal? Anxiety looms like a storm cloud. It feels heavy and uncertain…much like an isolated tomb.
Surely Your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life. Psalm 23:6a
How many beautiful gifts from God am I missing, as well? Chad was so excited to point out his surprise! Is God doing the same? Grinning at me, waiting for me to pay attention as He points out gifts He lined up a long time ago? I love that David began this sentence with “surely”. Hear the confidence! He had faith that God’s love and goodness will abound. The other word that I find significant is “all”….”all the days” of his life. Not just the happy ones. Not just the days that are marked with health, wealth, and prosperity. But, every single day is marked by God’s love and goodness. Even Holy Saturday.
How could David be so confident in this? How can we? We have a faithful God. He reveals Himself to us in big and small ways. There is always more to the story. He is always working things for our good, even if it’s through gifts that we won’t see for quite awhile. God is planting bulbs during this current crisis. Some will bloom quickly, and others may take months to be revealed. But, we can trust that He is at work, for our good, all of our days.
What “tulips” has God opened your eyes to recently?
Jesus, Thank You for the beautiful gifts all around us. Open our eyes to the love and goodness You freely offer all the days of our lives. Amen.