I don’t really love Lilies… I mean if the choice is between giving me lilies and giving me nothing then give me lilies. But give me the kind that instead of the long green stem they have long green glass, and instead of big white fragrant flowers they have a small synthetically made cork, and instead of their stems full of chlorophyll let them be filled with a fermented substances made from grapes. Yeah, wine! Give me some of that! It won’t last as long in my house as freshly cut Lilies but I’ll appreciate it more.
Lilies! We adorn Churches with them at Easter and coffins with them at funerals because as we all know they are the resurrection flower. They are the ones that get to adorn the cross when Christ rises. They are preferred. I am not one.
Lilies are on discount now. I won’t buy any. I think. I don’t have any room with the four dying poinsettias that are still crowding up my house….and I hear possibly poisoning my children. But mostly I won’t buy them because I’d be buying them without loving them. I want to want them but I don’t want them.
Some people really like Lilies. St. Therese of Lisieux writes about Lilies, Lilies and Roses. After confessing her surprise in finding “Our Lord treating certain privileged souls from the greatest tenderness from the cradle to the grave” and not others in the same way she is shown by God that “every flower He has created has a beauty of its own, that the splendor of the rose and the lily’s whiteness do not deprive the violet of its scent nor make less ravishing the daisy’s charm. I saw that if every little flower wished to be a rose, Nature would lose her spring adornments, and the field would be no longer enameled with its varied flowers” (4). Hmmm. For sometime I have felt her words to be true but there was always something in them that made me ask “But, but what if I don’t want to be a violet? What if I don’t want to be the smallest seemingly most insignificant flower? What if I want what others have? What if I’d actually like a whole field full of lilies? A whole field full of lilies would be BEAUTIFUL, even if I don’t prefer lilies. God would love that if I would, surely. How can St. Therese be right? Why is she right? I know she is but I can’t feel why.” Even as I felt and knew her words to be true I fought them. I wanted, and still do sometimes, what others have.
We all know some Lilies right? They are successful. They have it all together. They know more than you! They have more than you! They are more beautiful than you! They are probably closer to God. They are perfect. You are not perfect are you? You are just barely hanging on aren’t you?
Well, it turns out that Lilies are easy to grow. That’s right! LILIES ARE EASY TO GROW!!! Lilies need to be left alone. Their bulbs must be 12 inches to 16 inches away from other bulbs. The don’t need a lot of care. Yes, they may be big and beautiful! They may have more glamour, more jewelry, more money than you. They might know more than you. They may even think they are better than you. But you know what???? THEY ARE EASY TO GROW AND THEY HAVE TO LIVE FAR AWAY FROM OTHERS!
Well, my husband helped me see what this actually means for me. Although he is completely unaware, his love tonight showed me that it is actually better to not be a Lily. Tonight something happened that made me realize that Lilies are so far up high, so close to the sun and the warmth that they are left alone. They can’t even see that us smaller flowers exist. That’s why they hurt us sometimes, with their shade or with their beauty. When I came home in the middle of an anxiety attack, feeling attacked, feeling unloved, feeling like I couldn’t breathe, I needed my husband. I really really needed him. I got him too. He listened to me. He consoled me. He patted my leg. He hugged me. He let me cry. He tried to stay up late to talk to me. He was all mine. I got all his attention!!!
I was some small flower, one that needed attention and affection and love. A lily doesn’t need that. A lily is already almost done. It just needs to be left alone.
Now I finally realize, God might help certain souls reach perfection quicker.
But it’s the fragile flowers, the difficult children that get the special attention. I love attention!! That is me!!! I’m a little flower always in danger and almost always withering and wilting but there is always someone with me, guarding, protecting and watching my every second and at the last minute able to give me just what I need to lift my petals back up and beacon the butterflies. Thank God I’m not a lonely Lily.