Sunday, June 08, 2008

Of Texas Bluebonnets and of Life

Come April, the fields of Texas burst with bluebonnets. They’re positively breathtaking. It happened that I was in Dallas in early April and realized that as much as I wanted to photograph bluebonnets, it simply was not going to happen. And that saddened me so.

But then one Wednesday evening after church, after a presentation about my work here in Russia, dear sister Raydene approached me and she was hiding something behind her back.

I have a gift for you. You’ve given so much (I had to chuckle at that one) and brought us lots of souvenirs and all. And now I have a little something for you.

And she handed me a stack of pictures. Photos of bluebonnets.

My pulse raced.

Here, pick out your favorites.

Oh my, oh my, oh my! A thrill ran through my very soul.

I remembered that earlier that evening, as I was driving to that little country church, I passed bluebonnets along the highway but I couldn’t stop to photograph them. Mostly because I was dressed up for my presentation and didn’t need to go stomping through a field and getting down and dirty to shoot flowers. And then next morning there wouldn’t be time before I would be heading out of town. And so, I had told myself with a sniffle that. . . maybe, just maybe, next spring I’d have a chance to get close and capture the exquisite beauty of a bluebonnet.

But now, none of that mattered. Because this dear sister had done all the work for me – scouting for bluebonnets, pulling off the highway, and charging into a field – and I needed only to enjoy the results.

You can not imagine what this means to me. This is absolutely the most perfect gift you could have given me this evening.

And so the next morning, I headed off through Arkansas, Tennessee, and Kentucky to Beautiful Ohio and weeks later, south to North Carolina. And then when I returned to Dallas in mid-May, sure enough, the bluebonnets were but a memory.

But oh, the pink buttercups were in bloom! Such delicate beauty. What exquisite femininity ~ not unlike that which greets me in the mirror each morning (said howling with laughter).

Anyway, I found a patch of buttercups by a Wendy’s in Mesquite, just east of Dallas, and one morning when the sun was still soft and the flowers nearly open, I crawled through wet, dewy grass to capture the scene.

But by now, even those buttercups are but a memory. It’s rather poignant but. . .that's life. Cookies crumble and wildflowers fade.

All flesh is as grass and all its loveliness is like the flower of the field. The grass withers, the flower fades. . .But the word of our God stands forever. (Isaiah 40: 6-8)

Thank goodness that there's more to life than that which is physical and fades. Thank the good Lord for that which is eternal. And therein lies our hope.

1 comment:

Charity said...

Hi Eileen! I love the pictures of the buttercups and blue bonnets, and so does Rachel - she's an avid flower-admirer. Although at this point she doesn't always see the difference between a flower and a weed; our house is often graced with vases of dandelions and other weeds from the yard. i suppose beauty truly is in the eye of the beholder!