How Springtime Flowers Teach Us (Matthew 6:28–29)
By: Lia Martin
Today’s Bible Verse: Why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. – Matthew 6:28–29
Has there ever been a time when worry has served you well? When you’ve been so glad you spent energy conjuring up a potentially bad outcome...or plowing past better thoughts focused solely on your structured vision of security?
Worry can actually weaken us, and yet, we worry still. Hoping all our hand-wringing and hard working grow a shield of protection from life’s inevitables. God knows we’re made this way. Which is why Jesus teaches us how to handle worry when it comes.
Freedom from worry is one of so many reasons he arrived in the flesh. He shepherds our anxious hearts. And he gave us these words about the splendor of flowers, so we can learn from them. His words are alive. When we read or repeat them, they can actually renew us.
This verse in Matthew calls to me now because where I live, it’s almost bloomin’ time. It has me recalling the many times God has spoken to me in the language of flowers. Or trees, mushrooms, birds, and butterflies.
His message of resurrection and renewal is prevalent in all of creation. Waves that ebb and flow, the rhythm of sunrise and sunset, and the return of flowers—are all among many of his mind-blowing “object lessons.”
His work on the branches in springtime to unfold buds into bursts of glory is breathtaking. It’s like seeing a song painted all around you. Every year, spring teaches that no matter what—God is at work. Work we can only receive...not control, direct, or worry into our intended outcome.
I remember when I was a little girl, I would run up to the far back corner of a hill behind my house to be alone with a patch of violets. Their welcome mat was lowly, haphazard, and tiny. From their rocky landing they offered smiles of purple and gold. In a place you wouldn’t expect to find “splendor,” less-than-inch-high wildflowers spoke volumes.
And over the years, here’s what they taught me. They were willing to be overlooked. They were always being trampled. Yet they were consistent in their contribution. Content in sun or rain. And not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.
I didn’t know then exactly why in difficult times I would run to be flat-out, face-down connected with these minuscule miracles. I do now. These flowers, decorating the untamed places, were demonstrating what Jesus wants us to know in Matthew 6:28-29. That he is able even if we are not. And his power isn’t reflected in our fancy clothes, or impressive garments, but in our surrendering to what God will do.
Although commentary on this verse explains that the original word “lilies” could be translated into any showy flower of many varieties, Jesus is clear that these blossoms are in the field. They’re not groomed or manicured or planned by humans. Rather, they’re growing freely in his design. Trusting in his provision.
God wants us to see not only their beauty, but their lack of worry. He describes it as laboring and spinning. It’s true that Jesus is acknowledging our basic need for clothes, but he is asking us to shed the layer of worry we spin (which was how they made clothing in ancient times).
In this verse, Jesus isn’t saying “don’t work and don’t get dressed.” He is asking us to take in the lesson of creation. To see how even the most fragile among us rely on God’s provision and are dressed in just the way that gives him glory.
This is how he designed us to flourish...with a soul rooted in faith and at rest in his plan.
Lia Martin loves to inspire others to lean in to the Lord daily. She's a writer, editor, marketer, former Crosswalk.com Faith Editor, and author of Wisdom at Wit's End: Abandoning Supermom Myths in Search of Supernatural Peace. When she's not cultivating words, she loves walking in nature, reading, exploring the latest health trends, and laughing with her two wonderful kids. She blogs at liamartinwriting.com.
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