January 11, 2008
A Flower's Lesson
by Fred Alberti, Crosswalk.com Manager of Communities
In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.
My wonderful wife gave me a lovely red poinsettia for Christmas this year. Sadly, it looks a little worse right now than it did when she presented it.
However, despite the numerous light saber duels which have taken place around the ill-fated plant, it has only managed to suffer just a few lost stems.
Even with a few missing leaves, my poor plant has a lesson to share…
Not forgetting my recent lesson with a black walnut (mumbles to self), I decided to make a closer inspection of this holiday plant to see just what made it so eye-catching.
Leaving the abused plant's flowers (or what was left of them) intact, I discovered that the bright red "petals" were actually leaves. The flower of the plant is actually at the center of these brightly colored leaves.
It's the leaves that are closest to the flower at the center that show off the brilliant color.
Likewise, the closer we are to having Christ as the center of our lives and the stronger relationship with Him, the brighter we'll shine.
That brings us to the next lesson.
Why should we shine?
It certainly isn't supposed to be to gain attention for our own accomplishments.
Rather, it is to point people to God so that He will be praised for our good deeds.
I love the story of a certain disciple named Tabitha (See Acts 9:36-42 ).
She always performed good works and was active in ministering to the needs of the poor. It just so happened that Peter was in a nearby town when Tabitha died from an illness she had been fighting.
The local disciples sent for Peter in the hopes that he could help. Upon his arrival he was welcomed by a group of weeping widows. They were showcasing all the garments that Tabitha had made while she was with them.
Why? What did they expect to happen?
They clearly hoped for a miracle.
And a miracle is exactly what they got when God raised Tabitha back to life. She may have been a little worse for wear -- like my plant, perhaps -- but still pointing people to God.
How about you my friend?
Have you suffered a few light saber blows from life lately?
Maybe you have neglected to keep Christ at the center of your life. If that is the case, it is never to late to rededicate your life to Him.
Intersecting Faith & Life: Connect with a widow or widower in your church and see if there is yard work that you or your family can do.