Mid-June. I was out for a run. I passed by a home with thick honeysuckle overtaking the back fence, and the fragrance was intoxicating! It’s intriguing the way it aggressively climbs all over, yet has these tiny delicate flowers. Strong, yet sweet. I just had to have some!
So a few days later I eagerly made a trip to The Home Depot to get myself some honeysuckle. I thought I was so lucky when the lady told me there were only two or three plants left, and I was going to get them! I was totally giddy as I followed her to find my beautiful, fragrant honeysuckle!
Then, I saw them…
If she hadn’t insisted they were honeysuckle, I would have passed them by. They were 3-4 feet tall climbing green vines. But not one single honeysuckle bloom. No sweet scent. No delicate flowers. Just green vines. I was so disappointed, I really didn’t want to take them home. I asked her a few questions as to their health and how soon I could expect them to bloom. She told me:
Honeysuckle is hearty. It will survive a freeze in the winter. It will stay green and continue to grow in the heat of summer. And, when conditions aren’t so extreme, it will blossom beautifully for you this Fall and Spring.
Only halfway through the month of June, I didn’t want to wait until Fall for my honeysuckle to bloom. So like a child I asked, “Can I just feed them lots of Miracle Grow and expect…a ‘miracle’?” She patiently responded,
If you nurture it aggressively with food and water, you may get a few blooms. But, once we hit consecutive triple-digit days, you won’t see flowers. When the heat is extreme, they’ll still thrive. But, it takes entirely too much energy for them to blossom.
Too much energy to blossom… Each week as I feed and water them and inspect them gingerly for blooms, I hear those words in my head. I know that I learned a lot more from The Home Depot lady than how to care for honeysuckle. I learned how to grow during the extreme seasons of life.
When the heat and pressure are on, we aren’t all that pretty. Life is messy, especially when things get tough. If we give into the heat when life is bearing down upon us, we will wilt and wither. But, if we are hearty and courageous to make it through the intense heat or numbing cold, we will experience new growth. But, that requires a lot of energy.
It takes patience and commitment and risk to grow in the midst of our Plan B’s. It takes perseverance to be strong when the heat is resisting all our energy to bloom. But, if we are determined to press in and dig deep, we will not only survive, we will thrive! We will blossom!
So what if we aren’t all that pretty in the process? Some may look upon us with disappointment. Not everyone will see our value. We will not rise to meet everyone’s expectations. But, those who love us will nurture us and give us space and time to grow. They will respect our process and find us beautiful when others would simply pass us by.
Don’t give up on yourself. When we apply all our energy to growth during the difficult seasons, we will make ourselves strong and hearty. And in due season, we will blossom beautifully. Hold on. Seasons DO change.
In the meantime, may we endeavor to passionately seek beauty in every season—not wait until we blossom…
Blossoms are pretty. But, the strenuous process of growth—now that is beautiful. |Click to Tweet|