Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Flowers (10/03/05)
TITLE: Shaped by God
By Rachel Burkum
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With a tender touch, God formed the soft daisy petals, caressing each tiny detail as it was shaped and finished with perfection. It would adorn tables, trimmed and arranged for vases of all sizes. It would decorate walls, painted with great skill to lighten the darkest of rooms. God smiled as He saw Susie clutch her wilting bouquet in her hot chubby hands, and race across the yard to give her mother the gift that would be treasured forever. For love was being shown in the simplest of ways, presented in a tangible light of white and yellow.
For a splash of spring color, God set about molding a uniquely shaped flower. Long and slender, its stem rose high, its crown a vibrant orange to meet the morning sun. With a twinkle of humor in God’s eye, He splashed the lily with dark oblong spots, knowing that it would be named after the large cat He so adored. Waving in the warm spring breezes, the lilies opened toward the heavens, watching the sun make its way across the great expanse of sky.
With great care, God took a bit of purple and rubbed it thoughtfully between His fingers. A violet came to life, its dark hues sharing warmth wherever it was placed. The tiny pedals brought a questioning glance to the little girl’s face as she fingered the tiny flower. A smile formed on the lips of her grandmother as she gazed upon a story that had not been told in years. As the past was brought to life, the fragile flower was lifted from the yellowed pages of the book. Each leaf was still perfectly in tact, a symbol of time gone by, captured in delicate beauty.
In a whirlwind of color, flowers dotted the landscape, growing wild and free, or being raised within the fences of prized yards and gardens. Set in arrangements for joyous occasions, they accented the crown of a bride, or the gift of someone whose birthday was to be celebrated. Plucked, clipped, pruned and bent, they were mixed and matched in a flower shop window, beckoning to anyone who passed.
A bouquet of one’s favorite flowers brought on a wave of melancholy as it was placed atop the casket and mixed with tears that fell unchecked. More flowers filled the room, all expressions of grief and love. The sweet scent wafted through the air, in an attempt to sooth those that cried and mourned the loss of a loved one.
God stood back and gazed upon the bright colors that complimented His new sphere. Some were bold and planted in places that people were sure to notice. Some were small and hidden that took fine concentration and stillness to see. But something was still missing. A creation that symbolized the deepest of emotions, a true splendor within a world of turmoil.
God stroked the velvet-smooth pedals, bringing them tightly together in the center, and spreading them outward in a perfectly shaped rose. He watched in anticipation as Dan stood nervously on the porch after ringing the doorbell. The rose behind his back trembled in his hand as he rehearsed his confession of love. The dark red flower would bring his emotions to life in a gesture of giving and eternal respect.
Running a finger down the sturdy stem, God paused as He touched the sharp thorn. He watched in anguish as a whole crown of thorns was pushed onto His own Son’s head, just before the brutal crucifixion on a cross. As the rose withered over time, so the life was removed from Jesus’ body. But death would not prevail. Pushing forth from the ground, a new rose bloomed into beauty. So too did God’s Son rise as a Savior to man, bringing new life and new birth to those who believed.
God overlooked the earth and smiled. In a dark and troubled world, His flowers shone brightly.
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