Summer Flowers

A dear friend came to find me with flowers from her garden yesterday. I am touched by her thoughtfulness, and taking time now to look at them in front of me. What amazing and intricate creations of God’s they are! Bursting with color and fragrance, I could find in the vase hundreds of different textures and shapes. This is, of course, the wonder of creation, always pointing us to the benevolent Creator.

The beauty of creation is everywhere and in every moment of time. For me, though, in summer I am constantly bombarded by the wonder of it all. Today as I sit and contemplate this small vase and all it contains I become aware of how deficient I am in stopping and staying still long enough to really see what is before me.

In this case, and in this vase as in the vast creation all around me, it comes as a gift of love which is equally beautiful.

I’m taken back to the ancient Swedish folk tune “Blomstertid”, “Flower-time”, which dates back to 1697, and through time was sung by children on the last day of school when summer, after a long, cold and dark winter, had come. The words in our hymnal and translated by by late uncle, Zenos Hawkinson:

Now comes the time for flowers, for joy, for beauty great. Come near, you summer hours, earth’s grasses recreate. Sun’s kind and lovely charming of dead things winter slew, comes intimately warming and all is born anew.

Our lovely flowered meadows, the tilled fields’ noble seed, rich herbs laid out in windows, green groves sedately treed: these wonderful reminders of God’s good Kingdom strong; that we his grace remember, it spans the whole year long.

The word today is a pithy one…. “stop and smell the roses!”. Take time in this time of life, even today, to look around you, and focus in on the wonder of what you see, and so rejoice, give thanks, and sing!

Peter Hawkinson

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