Richards Column: Biblical Lessons from Wildflowers
Those who read my weekly columns know I occasionally share something I have read in an Our Daily Bread devotional. What I am writing about this week appeared in Our Daily Bread on May 27, 2021.
Jennifer Benson Schuldt spoke of the beautiful spring wildflowers which carpet certain areas of California like Antelope Valley and Figueroa Mountain. However, she shared that during droughts few flowers bloom. One could easily assume wildflowers simply do not grow in hostile conditions, but scientists have discovered certain wildflowers store massive quantities of seeds underground during droughts. Instead of allowing their seeds to germinate then die due to lack of moisture, the flowers save the seeds. When conditions improve, the flowers use the seeds they “saved for a rainy day” and vibrant wildflowers once again carpet the area.
The Bible tells the following stories of believers who have thrived during intensely challenging times. For example:
Job, one of the richest men in the ancient world, lost it all through no fault of his own. Unsympathetic “friends” left him feeling worse. Still, God eventually restored all he had lost and even more. (Job 1-42)
Joseph was sold into slavery by his brothers then imprisoned before becoming the second most powerful man in Egypt. He ultimately saved the ancient world from a terrible drought. (Genesis 37-50)
Moses was forcibly removed from his parent’s home as a child, and when he was 40 was forced to leave Egypt, the only place he had ever lived. It was not until he was 80 that God used him to deliver the Jewish people from Egypt. (Exodus 1-40)
David was anointed Israel’s second king when he was young, however, because the current king was jealous of his ability, he had to repeatedly run for his life before becoming king. (I Samuel 16 - II Samuel 2)
The story of God’s work continues in the New Testament with Jesus’ death and resurrection. Just 40 days later the infant church exploded with incredible growth.
Each of these stories demonstrates a situation where God changed hopelessness to hope. No one ever said it better than Jesus did when he shared these words in the Sermon on the Mount, “…if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?” (Matthew 6:30, NLT)
Here is the lesson for us all. God took care of each of these heroes of the Bible just as he takes care of the California wildflowers. While I may not know what is currently going on in your life, I do know that just as God protects the seeds of the wildflowers, he also cares about you and me and offers each of us hope.