I’m schooling the girls, and I look up and out of my window, as I do many times during the day.
That window saves me.
I desperately need to feel connected to nature. And here in the New York City, that’s not particularly an easy thing to do – be connected to nature. Not many homes offer countryside landscapes or an abundance of grass and trees, which I find to be utterly calming and soothing – like taking a mental bath, so I soak-up and appreciate any form of nature my concrete jungle affords me.
As I looked out of the window over the past few days my eyes were fixated on a flower with a beautiful pop of Autumn color. Almost as if nothing else existed in my view.
The colors are lively and vivid – the colors of fall – which some might reason are the best colors of all. The picture above DOES NOT do it justice. Each leaf is a delicate marriage of color with vibrant hues of orange and yellow. They are really quite lovely, and stunning as the colors of Autumn tend to be.
What’s so bizarre, or at least interesting, is that nothing else in my backyard looks anything else like that flower. All of the other foliage is mostly green with some leaves browning and some leaves yellow. This flower is a complete standout! In a sea of dying green and yellowing leaves is this one, wild pop of beauty on display.
What I haven’t mentioned is that the view from my backyard is not “lovely.” That beautiful flower is actually intertwined in a fence that borders my neighbors backyard.
Beyond the fence is a lot of construction trash which is thankfully hidden in the summer by an abundance of untamed bush, but in the fall when the elements bring death to mostly all things green my view is quite unsightly. The unsightly part is happening more and more every day with the passing of the season.
The more I look at that flower – that one standout flower in an environment that is looking more like a barren waste land with each passing day – the more I think that flower is symbolic of my life as a Christian.
As a Christian I am in this world, but not of it. I should live a life unscathed by the sin that surrounds me. That’s how that one flower looks to me, like it’s unaffected by all that surrounds it, standing out in contrast to the the weeds and trash.
“They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.” (John 17:16)
We are the “light of the world,” said Jesus (Matthew 5:14). I just wonder if I let my light shine? I wonder if to the world, to those that don’t know my soon and coming King, do I look like that flower? I wonder if that light in me shines so brightly and is so attractive that it compels men to follow My Lord?
“Ye are the light of the world. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”
(Matthew 14a & 16)
I wonder if that light in me shines so brightly that it stands in contrast to the darkness, convicting men of their sins, just as nature itself testifies about God?
The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge.
They have no speech, they use no words; no sound is heard from them.
Yet their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world.
Sometime ago, I came across this journal with a saying that has completely captivated me…
What will I do with my one Wild and Precious life?
That’s a really good question.
The flower in my backyard gently asks the same question of me.
I pray that I live it wildly for Jesus.