395. A wise lover values not so much the gift of the lover as the lover of the gift. ~Thomas à Kempis

God waits to win back his own flowers
as gifts from man’s hands.
~Rabindranath Tagore


It was late summer when she, my neighbor down the street, called to ask if I wanted a Crinum Lily. She said she had planted one in her yard but that it was in too much shade to bloom. Up front let me just tell you that only because I’d wanted a pink Crinum for years and had not been able to acquire one that I would have even considered saying yes at that time of year, trudge on down to her house on foot with shovel in tow, and dig the thing up out of heavy clay soil under the scorching heat of the Texas sun. However after having been captivated by this lily years before, I endured the blistering heat, dug the bulb up, and brought it back down to my garden. And as soon as I recovered from my near heat stroke, I cut all the long, heat-beleaguered strappy foliage down to almost nothing, found a spot in my garden where I thought it would thrive, and put it in the ground. Soon my prized acquisition began to show new growth, and I was thrilled. Then in early December we had one of the worst ice storms I’ve ever seen here and for days the frozen remains blanketed the ground. During that time I kept hoping against hope that when I could get out to check on it, the new “baby” would have survived the ice-bound onslaught. But sadly what I found days later was foliage that had turned to brown mush. Since it had been so newly planted before the early, brute force of the icy assault, I gave up hope that it would make a come back. But sure enough after the start of the new year, it did, and again I was thrilled. Then in early March we had the hardest, late freeze on record, and again in the aftermath I found nothing but a stub of brown mush where my hope had so recently be restored. Surely I thought to myself, it won’t make it back this time, but as spring warmed the land, I started seeing new growth where twice my hope had been dashed, and I was thrilled. At long last June came, and I had lots of lovely green foliage. As late as it was, however, I put away hope for flowers this time around thinking that it had suffered too much, too soon to bloom. So you can imagine my surprise and delight when I went out two days ago to find a tall stalk with buds on it had shot up almost overnight. Despite recent rains, I have been able, however, to capture the beauty of that which had previously been only a memory of something incredibly lovely I’d stumbled upon long ago in another’s garden. Isn’t it amazingly loving how without asking the Lord often grants us a thing of our heart’s desire out of the blue! I am thrilled. I am blessed. I am grateful.


A gift opens the way and ushers the giver into the presence of the great. ~Proverbs 18:16  ✝

Thank you, Lord Jesus, that you save, you heal, you restore, and you reveal Your Father’s heart to us! You have captured me with grace and I’m caught in Your infinite embrace! Like Saint Hildegard Lord, may I too be a feather on your holy breath and spread, like seeds, the gospel abroad.

21 thoughts on “395. A wise lover values not so much the gift of the lover as the lover of the gift. ~Thomas à Kempis

    • Why thank you, Susan, what a lovely thing to say! How anything could ever be any lovelier than His amazing grace is beyond my comprehension. May yours be a grace filled weekend. Hugs, Natalie 🙂


    • At first I thought maybe it was a silly tale but then the way you summed it up was exactly why I had to tell it. It may be “just” a flower, but whatever else it is or isn’t, it is a piece of Creation, and at the end of each day of Creation’s work, Scripture says God looked at what He had made and saw that it was good. So it can be and should be used to bring glory to the Maker of all that is. I hope you have a very blessed weekend, Patricia. Hugs, Natalie 🙂


    • Thanks, Cookie. It was well worth all the work and worry! And I still can’t get over the fact that out of the blue that’s what Sharon had that she wanted to give me. God is just so good! I pray you have a restful and blessed weekend. Hugs, N 🙂


  1. Springtime, with its unexpected miracles, reminds us of the miraculous nature of all our lives. A beautiful story. (Btw, the a in the title name ought to have its accent facing the other way, i.e., à.) Cheers, blessings!


    • Yes, springtime does and is meant to remind us of the miraculous nature of our lives. Thank you so much for pointing out my error on the accented a in the author’s name. Ya know, no matter how much I edit a piece before I post it, something always seems to slip by my scrutiny. I’m glad you enjoyed my post. May your day be blessed with lots of miracles. Cheers, Natalie 🙂


  2. Wow, Natalie, this is a stunning lily and a touching post. I’m so glad for the gift that He has given you in this lily and in your writing. God is interested in the details of our lives. I need to remember this everyday.

    Blessings ~ Wendy ❀


    • She is a beauty for sure! And like I said acquiring her was the only thing that would have gotten me out in the dreadful Texas heat that time of year to go get her. I am awfully glad I did though. You always make me feel so good about my posts. Blessings and hugs, Natalie 🙂


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