Bluebell Thoughts

The day was warm and the sky perfectly clear. My wife and I were already out, so we decided to take a short detour to a park in our city. I knew it was time for the bluebells to be in bloom, and I wanted her to see their beauty. We were not disappointed.
One or two of these flowers can be quite attractive. But when hundreds of them grow in close proximity, it’s breathtaking. As we savored the splendor I might have wondered, Where did all of these plants come from? Had someone spent hours setting out each plant to make such an attractive grouping?
Of course, I know the answer to that question. No one set out the vast majority of the bluebells. Perhaps one or two were deliberately placed, but then nature took over. Through the activity of birds, butterflies, and the wind, the seeds of these flowers have been spread over a large area. If all continues the same, the area will continue to spread each year.
“Consider the lilies of the field,” urged our Lord in Matthew 6:28 (NKJV). There are lessons Christians can learn from these delicate specimens of God’s creation. Just as bluebells and other flowers will spread if they follow the Master’s plan, so will Christianity.
To spread, flowers must be among the elements of the world. Confinement in a greenhouse will yield beautiful blossoms, but their ability to proliferate will diminish. In the same way Christians must be a presence in the world. The two images Jesus used in Matthew 5:13-16 — salt and light — teach this idea. Salt in a saltshaker may look nice, but it’s of no value to diners until sprinkled on food. A lighted lamp is useless if placed under a basket. Place it in the midst of darkness and its effect becomes great!
Will our Christian faith spread to others? It will (1) if we live it just as God directs, and (2) if we allow others to see the beauty Christ can bring into our lives. Today there may be only one or two Christian lives planted where we are. But come back in a few years and behold the grove! People enjoy the effects of Christ (unless sin has already hardened them). When they see your light shine, they will “glorify your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:16).
“So continuing daily with one another in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved” (Acts 2:46,47).

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