“Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another… Give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.” Romans 12:14-18
“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear... Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” Ephesians 4:29,32
“Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.” Colossians 3:12-14
There is nothing quite like walking along, keeping up a pace, and being arrested by a single bloom that the breeze picked off a tree and scattered on the grass. Its deep color is almost other-worldly, so distinct on the green carpet. Its perfect thwirl makes me imagine the Creator’s gentle fingers, touching its underneath with a complementary color then twisting its petals to open like sunrise. If God gives us these good gifts, why would we not in turn deliberately sprinkle blossoms along our daily way?
We have many encounters we may not see as opportunities to give a blessing, to add some loveliness and color, to share in a savory treat of kindness. But the Lord who makes the sun rise can illuminate our hearts and open our eyes to recognize them. Would we ask, then expect Him to awaken our sensitivities and embolden our wills?
When I pass or meet those who seem heavy-laden with life, how can I show love? What sparkle of the eye, name acknowledgement, or common ground might I initiate that becomes a conduit for Christ to pronounce their infinite worth? What expression of kindness, generosity, honor, or gratitude might stop one in her one-way track of heartache, worry, or dizzy, and awaken wonder at the goodness and benevolence of her Maker?￼￼￼￼￼ How am I dispensing the bouquets of blooms the Lord has entrusted to me, of mercy, patience, compassion, and forgiveness, that would spread furthest His graces and glory?
“Out in the highways and byways of life,
Many are weary and sad;
Carry the sunshine where darkness is rife,
Making the sorrowing glad.
Give as ’twas given to you in your need,
Love as the Master loved you;
Be to the helpless a helper indeed,
Unto your mission be true.
Make me a blessing, make me a blessing,
Out of my life may Jesus shine;
Make me a blessing, O Savior, I pray,
Make me a blessing to someone today.” ~Ira Bishop Wilson (1880-1950)
Lord, You have given me so much. Sharpen my sensitivities, open my heart, then direct and compel me to spread abroad Your blooms to those who need them most.