Tulips Still Standing
It was a season of transition and, oh yes, testing! Our wonderful children were becoming adults and it wasn’t easy. Everything that could happen was happening and it was only the beginning. It amazed me that my husband and I were still standing together. I had sometimes wondered what would become of us when our children left home. Little did I know just how incredibly difficult that would be for us over the next few years but, through it all, God’s faithfulness, mercy, and grace have never failed us. My husband and I are still standing thankful to testify with our two lips of His love and goodness towards us. With this in mind, I’d like to share the following true story. I hope that it will be an encouragement to others to trust in God and His great grace through it all.
Spring had sprung and a few of our tulips had decided to make an appearance. Most years the leaves would come, but no tulips. It was always a disappointment for me, but this year was different and I was inspired. I decided to do a quick painting about tulips. As I was painting the blue sky, a white wing seemed to be coming down over and into the midst of the tulips. I pondered the meaning a little, but soon got distracted by daily life. You see, we were about to get a new roof because of hail damage and I needed to get ready. They were coming in the morning and I wanted to put protective stakes around my few tulips before the roofers arrived. One thing led to another and I awoke the next morning to pounding and scraping on my roof and shingles flying off in every direction. I jumped out of bed realizing I’d overslept and not put out the stakes. Oh no! I ran to the window and saw they had put heavy tarps over all the bushes and most of the delicate tulips, except two that were amazingly still standing in the midst of the flying debris. A piece of metal flashing was almost touching the stems. I thought to myself, “they’ll never make it through the day.” It seemed utterly impossible. I sighed with hopelessness for the tulips and walked away from the window. The roofers worked all day and it was beginning to get dark. They quickly began to clean up the grounds: ripping off the tarps, running big blowers and other machines with extension cords, tramping all over the lawn and gardens. Even if the tulips had survived so far they’d never survive this. At last, the roofers were gone. I dared to look, but without hopeful expectation. Earlier, I had thought about asking God to protect them. I may have even, kind of, dared Him to. To my faithless amazement, when I looked out the window, there they were: two tulips still standing strong. Then, I felt the Lord impress upon my heart how the covering of God is far more effective to protect than the covering of man. Now, I understood the message of the wing coming down over the tulips in the painting.
“He will cover you with His pinions, and under His wings you may seek refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and a bulwark” (Psalm 91:4).
By, Ginger E. Mosher
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