Thursday, June 4, 2009

Black irises

Edna has to bring her magnifying glass to every Bible study but she hasn't missed a meeting in over a year. During the weekly discussion, she holds her Bible closely to her face, the magnifier mashed against her nose, and follows along, her shoulders bowed over the book.

She doesn't say much during the studies so I was surprised when she asked if we could all sit for a moment while she brought something to show us. A couple of minutes later, she rolled her walker back into the room with a flower vase in hand.

"Have any of you ever seen a black iris?" she asked. We hadn't but we all crowded in close to see the flowers. "They just cut these down," she said excitedly, pointing to the back of the property where the gardener had been cleaning out some debris.

Edna had rescued the irises from the trash pile. But she has that kind of heart. Earlier this spring, she'd planted a few petunias into an empty flower pot in the courtyard. And she'd secured a spot for a geranium when another pot sat empty.

Edna is 92 years old and shuffles with the help of her walker. But she hauled pitchers of waters out to the courtyard daily to tend to the seeds she'd planted.

"I've had flowers my whole life," she explained to the group, grinning broadly.

Jesus reminded his disciples that the flowers don't work or worry, yet they are clothed in beauty. Edna was God's hand to the rare irises last week and I think that she, too, is clothed in God's beauty.

Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these.

Luke 12:27

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