Just a short ways down the road from where I work is Canyon Lake, and Rapid Creek feeds into this. Along Rapid Creek, upstream of the lake, is a little wooded dirt path. With the creek running on one side, and trees towering above, I could almost forget the sounds of town as I poked along in the grasses over my lunch hour, hunting wildflowers and watching birds and listening to grasshoppers. So pleasant and refreshing.
Dandelions were in abundance, and a clump or two of early dame’s rocket. There was a carpet of not-yet-blooming violets, with a couple of over-eager violets trying to bloom. Then there was the columbine! I missed good pictures of this gem last year, because of a sub-par camera, and I snapped away happily. And then I got to thinking – What is it about dandelions that makes us consider them weeds, while flowers like columbine and blue flax and shootingstar we consider wildflowers? Whether something is a weed or a wildflower depends very much on perspective. A limited perspective fails to see the beauty or even usefulness of the weed – It may be a nuisance, I suppose, and grow where it isn’t wanted, but isn’t the weed beautiful as well in its own way? Doesn’t it provide pollen for our pollinators, and color to our landscapes? Sometimes I view life this way. Because I can’t see or refuse to see the meaning in something or because I am frustrated with a certain situation, I consider it bad or ugly or undesirable. But might my perspective just be wrong or limited? A broader perspective, a more whole perspective, might be able to see the lessons to be learned, the service to be done, the experience to be gained, and the very real joy to be experienced if I allow my perspective to be broadened. Sometimes God gifts us with difficult or trying situations or experiences or people in order to grow us in our walk of faith and to grow us in holiness. One step of that is learning to see God’s sovereignty in our lives, in both the rocky place and the pleasant places.
I want the perspective that lets me see weeds as wildflowers.