A WORD FOR TODAY, March 31, 2023

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Peggy Hoppes

Mar 30, 2023, 9:33:31 PM3/30/23
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We pray you have been blessed by this daily devotion. If you received it from a friend, you can see other devotions and studies by visiting our website at www.awordfortoday.org.


Blessings. Peg



A WORD FOR TODAY, March 31, 2023


“Like a father has compassion on his children, so Yahweh has compassion on those who fear him. For he knows how we are made. He remembers that we are dust. As for man, his days are like grass. As a flower of the field, so he flourishes. For the wind passes over it, and it is gone. Its place remembers it no more. But Yahweh’s loving kindness is from everlasting to everlasting with those who fear him, his righteousness to children’s children, to those who keep his covenant, to those who remember to obey his precepts. Yahweh has established his throne in the heavens. His kingdom rules over all.” Psalm 103:13-19, WEB


I am going on a wildflower adventure. It has been so hard to schedule time. Between busy schedules and uncooperative weather, I just have not been able to get out. I’m worried that I’m a little late, and that the fields will be beyond peak, but if I am going to go, I need to go soon. And I want to go.


Those of us who live in Texas are pretty proud of our wildflowers. Now, blooming spring flowers are not unique to Texas. After all, I can remember the delightful smells of the lilac bushes and the brilliant white of the dogwoods in Pennsylvania. I’ve seen fields filled with daffodils and poppies. Washington D.C. is incredible in sight and smell when the cherry trees are in bloom. Texans like to take Sunday afternoon drives to see the fields of color, just as people in the Northeast go to see the changing leaves. There are websites with recommendations to help hunters find the best places to see the wildflowers in bloom. Other websites offer wildflower identification listings. Some Facebook pages have up to the day reports of sightings around the state. The wildflowers even make the evening news.


While the state flower is the bluebonnet, and we search the country for the best of those brilliant blue fields, the direction I’m going tends to be more colorful. I am expecting to see fields washed in bright red, purple, yellow, pink, blue, and white flowers. Some of the reports are showing huge fields of many different types of wildflowers. The hard part about these adventures is finding places to stop to take pictures, but I can usually find turnouts, especially on the county roads.


One of my favorite places to visit are cemeteries. There is one that I regularly visit that has plenty of open space, and that is the direction I’m headed. Some cemeteries keep the lawns trimmed, but at this one they leave the wildflowers bloom for a time, covering the cemetery in splendid color, even on the gravesites, honoring the dead with natural offerings of flowers. It is absolutely beautiful. 


The first time I visited, I wandered through the cemetery, reading gravestones and thinking about the lives of those who had been buried there. Since it is a small-town cemetery, plots of land were devoted to families, with graves from generations for the past hundred years. I thought about people I knew with the same last names, wondering if they were somehow related. It brought those friends to mind. I found myself praying, not for the dead, but in thankfulness for their lives and for the living I remembered along the way. 


I found one gravestone from 1880 for a baby that died the day he was born. All death is sad, but it is especially sad when you discover a life that hasn’t even had the chance to be lived. The gravestone was not particularly well maintained. The plot was covered in wildflowers and it was obvious that no one had visited for a long time. I was heartbroken for the life lost, but I was also reminded that this is what Easter is all about. Easter is about new life, about rebirth, about hope. God speaks to us in the most ordinary ways, reminding us of His grace.


I think about life and today’s passage from the Psalm when I’m on a wildflower adventure. Though we last more than a day, our time is relatively short compared to the eternal existence of our Father in heaven. We spring up out of the dust, get blown and battered by the storms of life, and eventually pass away. For a few brief moments we provide an image of beauty and grace, perhaps not as delicate as the wildflowers but certainly as perishable. To think of life in this way can be very depressing.


Yet, we are reminded by the wildflowers and the psalmist that God’s love and mercy is forever. The flowers may die for this season, but they will be back another year. Our lives may be fleeting, but God is eternal. He has promised to share His eternal life with those who love Him and keep His covenant. He has guaranteed the promise through His Son, Jesus Christ, whose righteousness has become ours by faith. Even though our lives are fleeing, we will live forever. Though our time here is temporary, we have reason to rejoice! Like that baby in the cemetery, we may be born today and die tomorrow, but we will live forever with God.




A WORD FOR TODAY is posted five days a week – Monday through Friday. The devotional on Wednesday takes a look at the scripture from the Revised Common Lectionary for the upcoming Sunday.  A WORD FOR TODAY is posted on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/A-Word-for-Today-Devotional/339428839418276. Like the page to receive the devotion through Facebook. For information and to access our archives, visit http://www.awordfortoday.org



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