Three of the four seasons, flowers in my garden are beautiful. Every winter, however, the garden looks barren and brown, with the dead, remaining woody stems standing dominant. Visitors who are familiar with the garden often comment about its barrenness, when the chill in the air takes over. Hopefulness and knowledge of what lies beneath the ground, beyond eyesight are what makes the otherwise ugliness, tolerable.

Most people enjoy outdoor gardens. However, there are some people who do not like receiving cut flowers because they feel saddened when the buds begin to shrivel up and die. Cut flowers in a vase will ultimately need to be disposed of this is true, but their fragrance lingers, as does the joy their beauty delivered, at least for a while.

Jesus was the master of using everyday simple objects to teach His disciples the deeper spiritual lessons about life and death. In the 12th chapter of John, Jesus is preparing His followers for His inevitable death. He explains, that while He is still present with them in human bodily form,

His work and purpose have not been fulfilled. Of course, we on this side of the crucifixion and resurrection understand better what Jesus meant, when telling the story about the wheat. When the wheat grain falls into the soil, the appearance of death, in proper timing, the grain will produce more wheat, the picture of resurrection.

Whether standing in my garden or receiving flowers from a sweet someone thinking of me, the moment reminds me, that for those who follow Jesus, physical death is nothing more than returning to the ground, awaiting the final resurrection, that will come at the proper time God appoints and has promised. Appearances can be deceiving.

“Your dead shall live; their bodies shall rise. You who dwell in the dust, awake, and sing for joy! For your dew is a dew of light, and the earth will give birth to the dead” (Isaiah 26:19, ESV).

I pray you have found eternal life through Jesus Christ.