They grab your attention don’t they. Big, bright, and tall, they stand out and call for your attention. You come to a sunflower and take in the brilliant freshness of colour.
There is something however that is generally over looked. We don’t give it careful attention, yet without it there would be no flower, no glory, and no future.
Its all the other components of the sunflower.
The roots all unseen feeding and anchoring that skyscraper stem against wind and rain. Milllions and millions of microscopically fine hairlike roots all gathering moisture to feed the plant.
The stalk rising fast and strong bearing large sunlight collecting leaves.
A lot of attention is given to that flower, yet underneath there is a system, a chemical pathway, a division of cells.
For all the glory, praise, and brilliance offered in this world there is a undergirding of struggle and growth. Of a laying down of foundations, of working hard, building the habits of growth.
To have the glorious flower there has to be a struggle.
Some of the most beautiful impacting people I have encountered are those that others overlook. They aren’t beautiful in the way they would be on the front cover of the glossy fashion magazine. They haven’t achieved in terms that would place them on any man made honors list.
They are beautiful and honorable because of some inner life changing ‘nose to the grindstone’ experience.
Jesus was one that could see the beauty and honour in those others despised. He ate and partied with the not so ‘rich and famous’.
You see Jesus had a compelling vision for them all. A vision of sunflower glory, but in order to get there some hard realities needed to be faced.
5 Overlooked Ingredients for Sunflower Brilliance
1. Patience. It would be pretty amazing if suddenly the change you wanted miraculously happened. It doesn’t though, you have to be patient and wait. For all the self help gurus, the bling laden hype heroes, you still have to wait for good things to happen. I know, you want it now, now, now, but there are many lessons to be learnt just through the practice of patience.
2. Consistency. The cells of a growing plant consistently, day in day out, keep on laying the foundations of growth. The have a God designed habit of multiplication. Its a consistent habit of showing up and putting in the hard yards.
I have learned one thing. As Woody [Allen] says, ‘Showing up is 80 percent of life.’ Sometimes it’s easier to hide home in bed. I’ve done both. Marshall Brickman
3. An acceptance of the mundane. Its not all razzle dazzle. The mundane boring grind of life is part of the journey. Accepting it and knowing that it has a place will bring secure stability to your life. Jesus walked on water but mostly he walked on dirt.
4. The nurturing of the unseen. The powerful roots of a sunflower need the focus of the gardener. Water, compost, mulch, protection, all for that which is unseen. Much of life is intangible. It can’t be held, measured or grasped. Many of our questions will never be answered. For me the nurturing of the unseen is learning to be quiet and still, to listen and meditate on maybe just a few scriptures then seeing what grows out of this moist rich soil.
5. That life begins with a death. The seed has to die. The seed in its expression of smallness, yet laden with potent power, has to lose its shape, its shell and husk. It surrenders itself to the soil around it. If I want to see change in my life, to heal, recover then something has to die. A stubborn proud self reliance will never reap the harvest the seed was designed for.
Glory without grit is shallow and shabby.
What does your growth look like?
Its growing a life mini habit by mini habit. Its putting in the hard yards, its the struggle and the strain. Its the daily choices to build our sunflower stalk cell by cell.
What choices are you making today to grow?
Quotes to Consider
The secret of your success is hidden in your daily habits. Mike Murdock
Before the reward there must be labor. You plant before you harvest. You sow in tears before you reap joy. Ralph Ransom
Patience is necessary, and one cannot reap immediately where one has sown. Soren Kierkegaard
Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant. Robert Louis Stevenson
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