Lessons From an Orchid Plant

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Its roots may grow old in the ground and its stump die in the soil, yet at the scent of water it will bud and put forth shoots like a plant. —Job 14:8, 9, NIV

I woke up with the plant on my mind.

Within an hour, I had watched twenty YouTube videos and browsed half as many web pages to find the best care tips for my orchid plant.

If you have ever kept one of these tropical plants in winter, you may understand how difficult they are to keep alive. My friend gave me this responsibility when she gifted me with the orchid. At first, I did not appreciate her gift.

Our friendship had been strained for months, and I had given up trying. We had spoken about it; I had forgiven again only to be disappointed once more.

Then came the plant. An unspoken apology? I thought.

I left it in its plastic wrap, expecting it to die within days.

When it did not die, I unwrapped it, placed it on a windowsill, and began watering it twice a week. A week later, I saw a new bud ready to bloom.

I gave it more water (too much!) and started to speak encouraging words to my plant. It seemed to be doing well until it started to wither, and eventually, two nearly-bloomed buds fell off the stem. Now with my newfound knowledge, I repositioned the plant to where it would receive indirect sunlight. Then I confidently picked up a clean pair of scissors and reached for the stem where the buds had fallen off. I trimmed one inch above the node where the lowest flower budded. Snip. Next, I put three cubes of ice under the leaves to water the roots. I remembered, It is her birthday today! Ironic that I would wake up thinking about the plant she had gifted me. Suddenly, the plant became a symbol of our friendship.

Like my plant, friendships are beautiful.

To maintain a beautiful, healthy plant, a person needs to carry out definite responsibilities. In the same way, healthy relationships with those we love must also be nurtured. What about my relationship with God? I pondered.

Am I committed to a process of spiritual growth? Am I nurturing our friendship through prayer and the Word? Thank God we have an ever-patient, compassionate Gardener who knows how best to care for us. Thanks to His tender care, we can blossom in His beauty. May we all respond to His care today.

Kimasha P. Williams

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