Sunflowers remind me of at least three friends the Lord’s given me over time. The first is one I’ve known since high school. (She grew the sunflower on which the cover image was based.) Another I met later in high school and got to know better during college. (She lives on a lane called Sunflower.) The third lives in Colorado, and I’ve known her since the early 90’s. (On the way to visit her a decade ago, I saw fields full of sunflowers!)
Each of these in her own way has a gracious nature, as in Webster’s “marked by kindness; generosity of spirit; compassionate.” They’ve been reflections of our Father’s gracious nature.
This year, someone gave me starts of sunflowers for the garden I tend. After a bloom grew up, spread its petals, showed its face, it eventually bowed its head. Some cultures do this gesture as a show of kindness and courtesy.
One morning as I looked over the row of flowers along the side of the house, I noticed a goldfinch hanging upside-down on a bowed bloom. The gracious sunflower was in a state of kindness and favor toward the goldfinch, allowing the small bird to benefit from the seedlings growing in its center.
When I looked through the Scriptures to see how “gracious” was used, most often it was in reference to the Lord, while at times it was part of a plea to Him, asking Him to be gracious. How often He’s been that to us, especially in His once-for-all offer of Himself on the cross. Oh, that we also might make a plea: “Lord, make me gracious like You.” Perhaps sunflowers will help move me to such a request for the Lord to work in my own heart.
Greeting Card Design: BDAY-Gracious – click here to view in the Kat Kreations online katalog (also THANK-Gracious) The cover design is available as an art print: click here to order.
NOTE: The watermark only appears in the online version of the image in order to aid in protecting copyright. Greeting cards and art prints do not have the watermark.
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