It’s time to think about flowers and plants in South Carolina. Nearly two years ago, I bought a house with plantings of beautiful knock out roses, gladiolas and peonies. This year, I thought I would venture out and look for additional flowers. I stumbled on morning glory seeds. Morning glory (also written as morning-glory) is the common name for over 1,000 species of flowering plants.
No, I’m not a horticulturist and this post isn’t a tutorial on gardening. I looked up the information because I was intrigued by the name. It struck a nerve. My thoughts of morning glories moved to mourning glory.
I am among several women in a group who are widows. Some have been widowed a few months; others years. We often have lunch together, go to a movie and even travel to the beach. One topic that always surfaces in our conversation is a new thing we’ve had to tackle or learn. One friend described her month long roof repairs due to hail damage. She was frustrated with her insurance company and making calls to get estimates. Another said she bought tires for the first time (a different kind of first than the “first Christmas”) by herself. A third mentioned getting paperwork ready for taxes and bursting into tears when she saw her late husband’s signature on last year’s return and receipts. Someone else changed air filters and climbed a ladder to do it.
Each of us has our unfamiliar task and our lack of expertise, but we also celebrate our accomplishments.
“I drove three hours alone to spend a weekend at a friend’s house.”
“I completed the taxes.”
“I arranged for painters to paint two rooms.”
“I untangled garden hoses and it was a mess.”
“If I forget to leave lights on, I’m not afraid to come home to a dark house now.”
None of those was easy. Each was a different challenge and reminder that our husband wasn’t there. But we all on agree on one thing and we encourage each other: grace accompanied us each time.
…but He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you [My loving kindness and My mercy are more than enough—always available—regardless of the situation]; for [My] power is being perfected [and is completed and shows itself most effectively] in [your] weakness.” Therefore, I will all the more gladly boast in my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ [may completely enfold me and] may dwell in me. 2 Corinthians 12:9 AMP
Morning glories are used to cover arbors and trellises because of their lush foliage and brilliant colored trumpet-shaped blooms. The same can be said of grace. It’s a covering and gives brilliantly colored blooms that attract others.
The downside is morning glories bloom and curl up in the same day. But grace blooms and is endless. It’s one of God’s promises. He always keeps His promises. That’s why we have mourning glory.
What about you? When have you experienced grace as a mourning glory or in another difficult time?
Marilyn Nutter is the author of three devotional books, a contributor to compilations and online sites, and was editor for Penned from the Heart for the past two years. She serves in women’s ministry at her church and facilitates a Grief Support group. Marilyn also speaks for women’s church and community groups. Nearly a widow for four years, she has found the truth of God’s mercies and faithfulness real each day. (Lamentations 3: 22-23) She is the mother of three adult daughters and grandmother to eight. She lives in Greer, SC. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.marilynnutter.com for inspiration and encouragement or speaking for your group.