Caught in time is how I feel today and I would rather transcend it. Caught between now and Narcie’s brain surgery on May 10; caught between this job and the knowledge that a year from now we will be somewhere else; caught between weekends; caught between trips to Mt. Mitchell or the New River; caught between earth and heaven, caught between here and now & there and then; caught between the seen and the unseen – feeling caught. Caught like Australian singer Lenka between “enjoying the show” or “I want my money back.” Have you ever felt caught?
I sense the lingering memories of yesteryear, go through the motions of today, and pray for better tomorrows. There’s always hope, and, frankly, the good motto of South Carolina doesn’t do hope enough justice, “While I breathe, I hope.” Nope, hope is a forever thing, not just a breathing living thing. The Audacity of Hope, by then Senator Barack Obama is about embracing hope over cynicism – lots of luck with that in Washington. Yep, Hope is an audacious thing.
How did I claim hope this past weekend? I planted flowers, not vegetables. I did that a lot as a youth, too, but vegetables are “useful.” I wanted something better than useful to put an end to this prolonged semi-winter weather we’ve been having. To embrace spring I called upon the memories of a great Mom and Dad who taught me the names of flowers, how to lay out a plan, and visualize a seed into perfect bloom. I planted 2 large flower beds and two containers. Now that takes hope even when you have a picture on the seed packet.
Mother said a profound thing about flower gardens and arrangements, “You’ve got to have spillers and pillars.” You need the flowers that spill over, know no boundaries, and give big splashes of color. You also need to layer the bed by height, texture, and spread in order to create visual interest. You can’t just have all short plants. You’ve got to have pillars, too.
So, I’m looking at my list of spillers and pillars with a hopeful eye today: pinkish purple Ganges Primrose, pink and white Pentas, lime green Marguerite Sweet Potato Vines, Diamond Frost white Euphorbia, purple Angelonia, colorful wave supertunias like Royal Magenta, Blue Denim, Bermuda Beach, Picasso in Pink, Pretty Much Picasso, and basic but classy red, white, and purple wave petunia plants. I also added mini-petunias called Superbells in Blackberry Punch, Cherry Star, and basic red and white. I finished things off with a garnet Vinca called Pacifica Cranberry.
Use your imagination and try to glimpse the cranberry, purple, lime, pink, red, magenta, and Baby’s Breath-like white Euphorbia dancing together. You’d have to see the Pretty Much Picasso and Picasso in Pink to believe their “pop.” They’re mostly a cross between pink and fuchsia with purple throats and edged with lime green. They are like, “Wow!” The whole assortment is spillers and pillars. They give me hope, and that’s more than useful!
On this rainy Monday caught between “enjoying the show” and “I want my money back,” I’m choosing to enjoy the show! Through the audacity of hope and the promise of color-to-come through my spillers and pillars, life is a faith journey that calls us to be like flowers: bloom where we’re planted, let our joy spill over, and stand tall as a pillar for the outrageous possibility of a life in faith.