-Written in 2004
Most of us look at Dandelions and think of them as weeds not worthy of fertilizing. Yet the Dandelion starts out a stunning shade of yellow like that of the Sunflower. Children are drawn to its bright, beautiful color and believe it to be a delightful flower worthy of picking. To a child, the Dandelion is a perfect masterpiece as it is. They are ignorant to the fact it is just a weed.
What is the fate of a Dandelion that no child reaches toward? The once beautiful structure turns grey and is blown by the wind never to be seen again. The Dandelions are much like the lost souls who are suffering in our world without a relationship with God. They are born as a masterpiece of beauty. They begin as precious, innocent babies. Any adult child of God would be drawn to love them, ignorant to the fact the child may be headed for a life of pain, powerlessness, nowhere, nothingness….
What is the fate of the lost souls that no one chooses to reach out to in our world? Feeling unloved, they may be blown by the winds, growing old and grey without knowing a way home to The Father.
The Phlox has a tiny stem. By itself it doesn’t look like a flower of magnificence. Its petals are few and its center is tiny. Do not be deceived by the power of this precious, little flower. This flower can be planted among the rocks and the worst of soil and still flourish and spread. Perhaps it is their tiny roots working together in community to seek their way down to find water in the soil together is what gives them nourishment to multiply the way they do.
If you’ve ever seen a bed of Phlox, you know it can hardly contain itself. No boundary can withhold this flower from spreading its beauty. Each person who has found God is just like one of the Phlox. It is hard to comprehend that one little person in God’s flock can do so much for the rest of the flock, but it is harder to be filled with the Spirit of God when you’re walking the journey alone. By bonding together and gaining nourishment and strength from each other and our source, our cups overflow onto those around us and inevitably we extend our boundaries. Like the Phlox, most who have found God can hardly contain ourselves and we just want to spread God’s Love for the sake of everyone around us.
The Sunflower has a stem so thick it looks more like a stalk. It is full of the strength needed to uphold its massive flower. The Sunflower does not need anything to lean on like other tall flowers. No fence or trellis is required. The only thing the Sunflower seems to yearn for is the Sun. It looks to the source of its strength every moment of every day, its face obediently turning and following the Sun as it arcs across the sky from East to West, never wavering.
Can you picture how hard it must be for that stalk to bend and follow its source of strength and yet still fulfill its duty to support that enormous flower? When I think of a Sunflower, it reminds me of Jesus. Like the Sunflower, he was so full of the strength needed to uphold his massive mission. He leaned on no one. He always turned to his source, The Father, as his supply of strength. He never wavered.
Is there another flower that has a center like the Sunflower? Its heart is so huge and so full of seeds to be spread on the earth. Likewise, I can think of no other man whose heart was as large as Jesus’. Whether you believe in him or not, you have to admire how big of a heart he had. My heart aches and wants to break over the thought of just one of those that I love not making it to heaven. This man’s heart was so huge his heart ached at the thought of any soul not making it heaven.
He must have been full of sadness for each and every one of us to wish to endure what he did and die for every last one of us. Perhaps he didn’t just go into solitary places to pray but to cry his heart out seeing how far so many were from home. I believe he is watching our world and still crying…….
While he spread so many, many seeds upon the earth to bring souls home to The Father, there are still so many Dandelions in our world who need the Phlox of Gods children to love them.
Faith Without Works
What would happen to the Phlox if each one became comfortable? What if they thought they were safe just by being part of the massive bed? What if they let the others do all the work of extending their boundaries? What if they stopped drawing from their source of nourishment believing they would be nourished by the work of others? Their mass would dwindle and become sparse. Their brilliance would fade since the Phlox are most admirable for their beauty in numbers.
What would our world look like if each one of us who believe in God became comfortable? What if we believed we were safe just being part of the masses but never trying to practice what the mass teaches? What if each of us believed there were others to do the work of extending the boundaries of God’s love and left that work all up to them? How would we treat others if we stopped drawing from the source of our own love from the Father?
You see, that Son flower must still be crying because there are still so many Dandelions out there … lonely, suffering or feeling unworthy, not knowing the love of The Father. They have no one who cares to reach out and fertilize them with love as any young child would do for the Dandelion.
How many in the flock of sheep are too comfortable in our self absorbed world? We must become like little children who run to the Dandelions and proudly say “Look, Daddy, a flower!”. We must run to the Dandelions of our world and with a great sense of joy and pride say to our Heavenly Father, “Look at the precious lost soul I have found and have loved!”
A Prayer for You
To the Phlox: The next time you see a Dandelion, may you be reminded of this parable. May you pray for a soul you know is suffering or feeling unloved to come into the flock of God’s sheep. May you be reminded of your innocence when you were a child and ran to the Dandelions. May you feel deep in your soul you are helping this person, pride within your heart for doing so, and God’s love shining upon you in gladness. Whether that Dandelion is young, bright and yellow one or an old and grey one… please pray, for even children find something worthy in the old and grey ones. In fact, if that Dandelion is an old and grey one, may you take a risk and feel like a child again, pick it, and make a wish upon it for a lost Dandelion of this world.
To the Dandelions: May you know that you are loved by God even if no one extends love to you in this world. May you know that you are beautiful just as you are. May God introduce you to one in his flock who can help lead you into the knowledge of the fullness of God’s love. May you enter the journey of becoming one of those in the flock who can help other Dandelions, for you can identify with the lost souls more then anyone else. You are the least threatening to them and can do the most to reach them since you’ve been one yourself.
To Those Striving to be Sunflowers: May you never give up in your determination. May God give you the strength to endure the rest of your journey and the answers you need in order to get there. May you pray earnestly for the Dandelions of this world. May you feel the sadness that comes with knowing they need your prayers but still not lose sight of the joy. May you pray for those in the Phlox of our world to yearn to be Sunflowers, for just imagine what the world would look like if everyone in the flock of God’s children strove to be as obedient to their source as the Sunflowers. It would be Heavenly!