September 17, 2008
Longing To Be a Lily
“See how the lilies of the field grow.
They do not labor or spin.” Matthew 6:27-28 (NIV)
“They are simply stunning,” she raved, referring to the massive clump of iris blooms. Two years ago we moved that batch of flowers with us to this house, even though they had never produced one single blossom. We had hopes that given enough sun, space and care, they might just surprise us. And they did – just like my daughter, Tiffany.
We celebrated our youngest daughter’s college graduation recently, followed immediately by her engagement. It was during this gala event that our friend noticed the striking array of blooms leading up to our door. The lilies captured her attention.
The day after my visitors left, I sat at work pondering my daughter’s life. I had been thinking that day about how close I came to aborting my Tiffany, how incredibly hopeless I felt 22 years ago. But in the midst of it all, God had sent a 96 year-old angel by the name of Mrs. Metcalf to gently pat my hand and proclaim, "This baby will be a blessing." Soon after, those 6 words echoed in my mind as I sat in the waiting room at Planned Parenthood. When they called my name, I cried and ran for the door. I did not abort my baby.
While I was thanking God for Tiffany’s life, the phone rang. It was my counseling minister at church calling to ask for help. He’d just hung up from talking with a distraught mother who discovered she was pregnant...again. Her life was in turmoil and she had an appointment the next day for an abortion. He knew my story and asked if I would consider calling her. Isn't God amazing?
Please know that my life was not without many challenges after I made the decision to have my child. But this particular week I rejoiced that God urged a neighbor to come along side me and whisper words of hope.
So here I was with the opportunity to share my story with someone so close to the same decision. I called her. I didn't preach, but simply told her my story. I told her how much I understood her panic, her fear, and her doubt, and it brought us together. Then I shared that 22 years ago I could never have imagined standing and applauding my daughter at her college graduation. Tiffany in turn has touched many others by her joyful, bubbly life. How could I have known the plans that God had in store for that precious baby in my womb? I didn’t, but God did. And He used Mrs. Metcalf to speak to me.
Mrs. Metcalf was my lily – my attention getter. She didn’t toil or spin trying to figure out what to say to me, or force her influence on my decision. Instead, she simply glowed with God’s beauty.
Is there a life near you that needs a lily – a display of God’s love, a place to feel His care? Are you willing to just simply be there for someone today and let God love him or her through you?
Dear Lord, thank You for giving us beautiful examples of how we should live our lives, like the lilies; simple, fragrant, outstanding. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
* We praise God for this beautiful story from Luann’s life. However, we realize that some of you may have suffered through the pain of an abortion. Therefore, we are running a devotion tomorrow written by Lysa where she’ll share her story, and the hope and healing that can be found following an abortion.
Traveling Together, by Karla Worley
Who Holds the Key To Your Heart? by Lysa TerKeurst. (Lysa wrote this book and Bible study specifically for people who are suffering in silence due to regrets from their past.)
Live this day as if there was no one to impress. Focus on God. Simply be.
What do I busy myself with in an effort to please God?
How do I spend my day?
Why do I worry about being useful?
Matthew 11:28, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (NIV)
John 13:35, “By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (NIV)
1 Corinthians 3:7, “So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.” (NIV)
© 2008 by Luann Prater. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
Matthews, NC 28105
Originally published Wednesday, 17 September 2008.