Monday, October 15, 2012

Worth a repeat :)

I feel like a real columnist----this is a repeat from a few years ago.  But it is the same season, the feelings are the same, and I hope it blesses you today. :)  P.S.  My garden hasn't done this since.
The Mums in the Garden

by Sandra Stotler on Wednesday, September 15, 2010 at 11:30pm ·

I love the fall.  Just love it.  Love the colorful trees, the crackle of leaves and acorns under my feet, the crisp scent in the air, all my fall Yankee candle scents, apple cider, making pumpkin-themed desserts---just absolutely nothing like it. 

I also like mums.  Mums are strange flowers.  You can purchase them at the discount store in the fall for about three bucks--they are just bursting with color, one continuous ball of autumn hue.  Mums are pretty much impossible to ignore in the fall, when they peak:  in an otherwise bleak landscape, they are the only color visible, just bursting with blooms, their leaves barely visible.

They are visible in the spring and summer too, but for a different reason.  Last year I planted said bargain mums, because the only thing better than bargain mums is having them again next year for F-R-E-E.  Well don't you know, the mums were practically the first plants that sprouted.  What promise!  Taller than any of my flowers that would be blooming much, much earlier.  I just couldn't wait to see those mums!

But soon my spring flowers sprouted and bloomed.  This made my mums stick out like a tall, gangly teenager in 6th grade; all the height, but the maturity of a typical 12-year-old.  My mums looked, well, awkward, and were somewhat embarrassing.  I mean, the healthiest plants in the flower garden---tall and very noticable---and yet not one bloom in sight!  I sometimes wished I would have planted them elsewhere.  Not right in the front of the house---I could have used that premium earth for petunias or begonias, or perhaps delicate daisies!  But nonetheless here they were--and all I could do was wait. 

Irises came and went, and the black-eyed susan's too.  And then, just last week as the other flowers were dying---I got my first mum blossom!  Popping out everyday, new ones; a striking electric yellow, a yellow that can't help but be stared at.  In fact as I pull in my driveway I stop for a bit sometimes and just admire them from the street, because I can quite easily see them from there. 

I have been blessed by God above with a "mum" of my own.  I would not trade raising a special-needs child for all the riches in the world.  I would not wave a magic wand and cure him for fear of losing who he is.  My Lord promised me that "all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose" (Romans 8:28) One night on my knees I humbly and tearfully begged God for a child to raise for Him.  Not one to love me back, or to give me some sense of purpose or to fufill some childhood fairytale involving Prince Charming---but for a child that would honor God and bring Him glory.  And I received a mum.

Now I questioned my mum, albeit briefly, which to be quite honest is out of character for this bastian of self-righteousness.  In my arrogance I thought that "bringing God honor and glory" meant becoming a preacher, or a great deacon, or a missionary to carry the gospel to other nations.  But the Potter has been using my precious mum to bring Him glory all the time. 

Having a mum has forced this self-reliant, sinner saved by grace, to TRULY rely on Jesus.  To cry out to Him in moments of dispair in search of comfort where there is otherwise none, and to diligently seek the face of GOD in search of wisdom regarding decisions.  It has caused both of his parents to be abased in our lifestyles, to re-evaluate what is important, to be compelled to submit ourselves to what SHOULD be done in our household anyway.  Having a mum has given us both soul-felt, tear-producing compassion for parents of sick or disabled children.  The pot cannot fashion itself.  The Potter uses trials to mold the pot into the shape that He desires.  And having a mum has shaped me into someone I would certainly not otherwise be. 

This story is not over.  My precious, sweet awkward mum is still growing.  And God blesses me everyday with the opportunity to be here, to watch it all unfold, while faithfully, and abundantly, blessing us with comfort, peace and joy in the soul-- and absolute delight in our remarkable son.  One day he will bloom on his own, in his timing---and I have no question that he will be a bright hue of joy in an otherwise "typical" landscape.  Others see the spring mum---but through eyes of faith, and with the comfort of the Holy Spirit deep in my soul, I see the blooms already.