“As one whom his mother comforteth, so will I comfort you.” (Isaiah 66:13 KJV)
The orange daylilies pictured above have their origins in my mother’s garden. They aren’t blooming today, June 23rd, but they will soon burst into the flowers you see pictured above and below. These daylilies, which are now scattered around my yard, my daughter’s yard, my sisters’ yards, and the yards of several friends, have been a constant reminder of my mother wherever I’ve been. They’ve been planted in Texas, Indiana, Ohio, and Kentucky. Maybe a few other states, too, as friends and family who’ve been gifted with the flowers have moved around the USA.
A beautiful orange color, these daylilies have triple layered blooms, and in the 40 years they have been in my gardens they always, always bloom for me around July 4.
Except for one year.
On Sunday June 13, 2010, my brother-in-law died suddenly in the night while hospitalized. It was quite a shock to the family as we had been expecting him to be released in the next few days. While helping my sister plan the funeral, the discussion about flowers arose. I mentioned Mom’s daylilies had started to bloom early. I had noticed buds on the flowers on May 30, and had written it in my garden log, but had not expected them to bloom until July 4, as they always did. Instead, one of the daylily beds was full of blooms in early June. My daisies, which are my sister’s favorite flowers, were also blooming early. My sister said she would love to have some of Mom’s flowers to put around the casket. My brother-in-law was close to my mother, who had gone to her reward many years prior. My sister thought having Mom’s flowers there would be like having her at the funeral.
Since daylily blooms only last one day, on the morning of the viewing and funeral I cut enough daylilies and daisies to fill three vases: one from me, one from my youngest sister, and one from my daughter. After the funeral the grieving family took the vases home. The buds on the daylily stems continued to bloom until they were all spent.
In all the years that have followed, Mom’s daylilies have not bloomed in early June. They are back to their normal bloom cycle: buds in late June, blooms bursting onto the scene on July 4.
To the average person this is just probably just an ordinary story of flowers blooming because of an unusual flowering season. To a gardener who believes in miracles, this event holds the touch of God’s hand in it. For my sister there was something comforting in seeing those lilies surrounding her husband’s casket. And I must also admit I felt my mother’s presence that year when her lilies brought a bit of solace into a mournful time.
My mother’s daylilies brought our family consolation at a time of sadness, but God’s love brings a comfort that surpasses any our mothers, memories of our mothers, or other loved ones here on earth could ever hope to provide. God walks beside us every day. He holds us in His hands and lifts us up when we are weary. He folds us in His arms when we are brokenhearted. He gently guides us when we need leading. He provides for us when we have needs.
And when we need it most, He sends us reminders of His presence. In June of 2010 He sent my family’s reminder through bouquets of orange daylilies.
What about you? Has God ever given you an unexpected comfort in a time of need?
Daylily Comforts (© Catherine Hershberger 7/23/2018)
About the Author:
Catherine is a member of Greendale First Church of Christ. She is also an award-winning author of sweet and inspirational romance under the pen name of Catherine Castle. Many of her devotions have appeared on various places on the internet. You can find her books on her Amazon Author page or at Barnes and Noble.