Monday, August 22, 2011

What If Today Is All We Have?

It's a day in late summer when I'm standing in the middle of rows and rows of plants.  I'm choosing pots of beauty, bringing them home to a garden beside the little green house with a purple door.  It's well past bloom time for most of what I'm buying, and I'm hunting around, reading tags, trying to imagine the kind of beauty these plants are hiding.


I'm buried in the "Full Sun Perennials" when I read these words on a tag:  Fragrant cream flowers with purple centers.  And of course I'm sold because purple's been the color I've loved since I was just an awkward girl trying to find a way to grow up.  I put it in my cart and I don't know it yet, but I'm whisking it away to a life that's just weeks away from falling to pieces.


It's much later when I take note of this beauty's name.  Hemerocallis 'Pandora's Box.'  And it's later still when I understand what it means.


Because I might've thought I knew what it meant to be a daylily, but how could I have understood that each bloom would open full and stunning, only to fade away after a single day of beauty?  Who really wants to accept that today is the only day we have to live?


It's three years later and I've uprooted, fallen apart, tried to rebuild a life.  Not everything's still alive after all the heartache we've seen, but this one plant, she's become the symbol of our hope.


She might die back into the darkness of the ground when Winter's here and it's hard to breathe, but she's still fully alive, waiting for redemption.  And she might spend long months growing leaves and buds in the spring, only to open up her blooms for just a single day a piece.  But isn't that what we're all made for anyway?  To live here, in this moment He's given, knowing it may be the only one we have?


Oh, we're made for a future we can't see, a purpose we can't fully know, a life beyond all the here and now.  But each moment on this earth?  It's a gift.  And we're meant to live it fully open, all His beauty shining forth from our broken jars of clay.


Most of us have been given much more than a single day to live, love, leave His mark in the world.  But how many days have we wasted--how many have I wasted--afraid of what's to come, afraid of how this ends, afraid to be who we are?  Maybe I haven't thrown away every last one, but oh, too many have slipped through my hands.


And I watch 'Pandora's Box' open her blooms wide, let all the beauty come out of hiding.  She doesn't save anything for tomorrow because today is all she has.  I might wish I had more time, more strength, more ability to bring Him Glory.  But what if I truly believed that what I have right now--this day, this strength, this ability--is all I have to give Him?


Then I might finally understand what's been true since I was born.  Every day, every moment, every bit of strength and courage and hope--it's a gift.  A drop of pure Grace, falling down from the God Who Loves.


And it's then that I might finally start to live.  The way He's always wanted.  Heart and hands open wide, Him spilling out, me breathing in everything He's given.  Not afraid of tomorrows, or unhappy endings, or people who won't love me back.  Not afraid to be who I am.


Because it's true.  This moment, this strength, this ability--this woman I am--it's what He's given me and it's all I have to give Him in return.


And the most beautiful miracle of all?

This moment, right here and now, it's enough to build a life.  A life that pleases, glorifies, gives everything to the One Who's already given us His All.



1074.  Warm days and nights, summer really here

1075.  Strength to accomplish a task, even if it's small

1076.  Courage to overcome a fear, even if it's a little one

1077.  Clouds and wind and rain...reminder of Fall's coming

1078.  Friend who waits when words are hard to find

1079.  Shared tears, hugs, life

1080.  This moment, this day

1081.  Who I am right now

1082.  Being enough

1083.  Every drop of Grace falling down, reaching even me

10 comments:

  1. wonderful gifts!
    "But each moment on this earth? It's a gift." --so very true.
    found you via A Holy Experience.

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  2. love the pics and the post from mamagriffith

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  3. 1075 and 1076 - me, too. I linked to your previous post on my gratitude list yesterday. Thank you for sharing what He gives.

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  4. This is so beautiful, I love your writing and the beautiful way you are growing. I am just at the beginning of my growth and I am so encourage to persevere. Thank you for sharing.

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  5. @PamJ: Thank you so much for stopping by! Ann's blog is a great place to find new friends :o).

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  6. @Anonymous: Thanks for the love, MamaGriffith! I wanted to try turning a gardening post into an essay of sorts, and I think it worked out well.

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  7. @tinuviel: Thank you for your faithful reading and commenting here on my blog. And thank you for noticing 1075 and 1076--small victories are a big deal in this life with chronic illness, aren't they? Off to read your post right now...

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  8. @Anonymous: Thank you for your words...I write here to process and make sense of my own story but also, and just as importantly, to inspire others in their own journeys toward spiritual and personal growth. Many blessing to you, Friend, as you press on in becoming the person God has called you to be. It's not an easy road but so very worth it in every way.

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  9. @Clumsy Girl: Thanks, my friend...and I love you.

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