🌻🌻AUGUST – The gift of sunflowers.🌻🌻
Anxious, overwhelmed, exhausted, mentally and emotionally drained. These have become the words that I started to hear more and more and even use myself.
Daily we are confronted by traumatic news – loved ones dying, riots, looting, violence, hopelessness. When will this all stop? The question, so many of us want to ask.
The struggle is real – for so many of you and me.
It’s a new month – August. I want to experience excitement and joy, but I feel anxious, uncertain – what will August bring?
Last week I had the privilege to work with a leadership team from a church. I have forgotten how much I enjoy doing what I love – discovering, developing and encouraging others—assisting people to reach their full potential and inspire others.
As I was preparing, my thoughts raced, my inner critic shouted all the reasons why I’m not the right person for the task.
I searched the scriptures. I was looking for something unique about leadership. But the Lord took me to Psalm 139. I could associate with David, and I loved how sincere he was with his anxious thoughts, he cried out,
“Search me [thoroughly], O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts;
And see if there is any wicked or hurtful way in me, And lead me in an everlasting way.” (Ps. 139:22-23 AMP)
I prayed with David, “Search me, Lord, you know my anxious thoughts.”
I was thinking about the Psalm, and once again, I was reminded that God knows me even when I don’t know myself. He is the One that created me. Even my struggle with my emotional experiences is no surprise to Him.
“O Lord, you have searched me [thoroughly] and have known me.
You know when I sit down and rise [my entire life, everything I do];
You understand my thought from afar.
You scrutinise my path and my lying down,
And You are intimately acquainted with all my ways.
Even before there is a word on my tongue [still unspoken],
Behold, O Lord, You know it all.”
(Ps. 139:1-4 AMP)
Over the weekend, my eldest godchild came to visit, and she brought me sunflowers. They are bright yellow and beautiful— Sunshine in a vase. My own heart longed for that sunshine. These flowers are unique in that they can provide energy in the form of nourishment and vibrancy—attributes that mirror the sun and the energy provided by its heat and light. Sunflowers are known for being “happy” flowers, making them the perfect gift to bring joy to someone’s day.
I discovered something about sunflowers I never knew. The head of the sunflower is a combination of a thousand tiny flowers. Each petal on the circumference of a sunflower is a flower itself.
Once again, I was reminded of Psalm 139. The NLT translation is so beautifully written.
“You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knitted me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvellous—how well I know it.” (Ps. 139: 13 -14 NLT)
August will be my sunflower month. To the Son, to the Word of God, I will continue to turn my head. By sharing my struggles, I hope to inspire others. I will rejoice because God has made me wonderfully complex – just like the sunflower with more than a thousand tiny flowers you can’t see. That is beauty, that is joy, that is potential, that is hope.
And when the dark clouds of uncertainty roll in, I will do what the sunflower does; they turn their faces to each other. I will find a friend, and I will turn my face to them and hopefully, they will do the same because God created us to need one another and Him to grow.
My prayer for you, may you discover how wonderfully complex you are, may you take your anxious thoughts to God like David and may you be blessed with sunflower friendships in these uncertain times.
Lots of love,