Opportunities lost, opportunities found

“Make hay while the sun shines,” says the old farming adage. Farmers cannot cut and bale hay when it’s raining, for sure. 

While my little slice of heaven that I call “garden” is no farm by any means, the rule still applies. That yard sale I wanted to go to will have to be forfeited in favor of getting those tomato plants in before the rain comes, and the housework has often (too often) been put on hold until one or another time-sensitive garden task is done. 

Last spring I came across some forgotten daffodil bulbs under my potting table, trying with their last ounce of rootless strength to bloom in spite of my neglect. It is true that the neglect was caused by my attending to a human emergency, and for that I am not sorry.

Still, it was a little sad to behold their pitiful yellow blooms as if they were gazing reproachfully into my surprised face. They were planted the same day I found them, but they likely didn’t live. They would have been unable to put down enough roots to make the bulbs strong enough for the coming year. If they did survive, they would not bloom for another year or two.

An opportunity lost. Not just for the bulbs, but for the garden. This year will be no different; bulbs that were dug or purchased in the summer and fall did not end up in the ground.

It is a true statement that we cannot do all we wish to do in the short time we have allotted here on earth, so we do have to choose from the options available. Many times, we do not choose well. 

“Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it” (Proverbs 3:27, NASB).

The bulbs now languishing in the garage are what is left over from what I gave to friends as I realized I might not have time to plant them. I should have given more. 

We have to wonder how many other opportunities we have lost because we did not seize the moment. Sure, there are moments that elude seizing; but maybe we should focus on the ones where we DO have a choice.

The young family who loves daffodils could have been contacted to come and rescue the bulbs for their new property, for instance.  The sick elderly couple could have been sent a card of encouragement. There are so many regrets and lost opportunities over the last few months! 

However, we look forward and not back, for we are truly not going that way.

“Brothers and sisters, I do not regard myself as having taken hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13, 14).


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