Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Finding hope in a cemetery

Luke 12:27-28
“Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 28 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith!”

This past Sunday was so beautiful. The weather was nice and JC and I decided that we had been locked in the house long enough with her broken arm. We were ready to go play outside, but what could we do with her arm being in a huge cast? Obviously riding her pony was off the agenda for a while. We decided to go to the cemetery and put out some bright colored metal spring flowers we got for Jackson. 

When we pulled up the first thing we both noticed was the amount of yellow daffodils all over the cemetery. As we drove toward Jackson’s spot I noticed the flowers were not nearly as abundant as in the older section of the cemetery. What was up with that? JC and I decided to walk to the older section and investigate. It was amazing! Most of the stones that dated back 100 years or more were the ones with all the daffodils. Some of the flowers were meticulously planted around the perimeter of the site in a beautiful spray of yellow daffodil promises. They were planted so perfectly in love that I could not help but picture the loved one on their knees mourning their loss and planting flowers that would grow even when the life of that person may have been forgotten over the years.

I have never been one to find comfort in the cemetery, not until Sunday. It was quiet and so full of peace, the perfect place to spend time talking and walking with my 7 year old. While it’s not fair that our daughter has to understand the permanent concept of death from saying goodbye to her big brother, it was beautiful how God led us there to see show me how sweet and tender her heart is. She wanted to know how old each person was and what their name is. She was upset when she asked me if it’s possible that some of them did not know Jesus. 

As we walked farther through the rows of the very old stones, the daffodils were literally jumping out at us.  I let her pick some of the wild daffodils along the wood line because she wanted to put them on the graves with no flowers. I could not help but smile at the thought of young “Mr.Bertie” giving her a big hug one day in Heaven for being so sweet as to give him some bright yellow flowers of his own. 

When we got home I could not shake the picture in my mind of all of those meticulously planted daffodils. Why were they so abundant in the older part of the cemetery? I started researching online and I found this written by a woman who traveled many cemeteries documenting the age of the stones and carvings: “Cemetery daffodils symbolize grace, beauty, deep regard, mortality, the death of a youth, new beginnings, innocence and unrequited love, making them very popular as part of the silent language depicted on stones.”
I can’t explain why all of a sudden God wanted me to SEE the flowers, but He did. I have been feeling lost lately. As I have shared before the change of season always hits me hard, it’s a reminder that time is moving without my son here with me. I think God wanted to remind me that He is in control. He can give us the idea to plant flowers that last much longer than the memory of our Earthly lives. He calls them to bloom every spring, possible 80-100 years after they were planted! He has not forgotten us though at times it sure feels that way.  Just like he remembers to call those daffodils to bloom every spring He remembers us. Those daffodils planted by loved ones serve as reminders of the love the planter has for the one gone before them. The wild flowers just may serve as reminders that He remembers us.  

   Spring is Coming
“Feel the sun on your skin
Growing strong and warm again
Watch the ground: there's something moving
Something is breaking through
New life is breaking through” ~Steven Curtis Chapman


  1. Perfect, as always, Ronnie. Thanks so much for this reminder of hope, even in a cemetery. Like you, I'm not a cemetery person ... I get no comfort from being at Hannah's grave. However, I feel like, now that we've reached that five year mark, I'm at least beginning to "make friends" with her grave. It's been a long process for me. Thank you again for this beautiful post!