I absolutely love blue hydrangeas. However, they can be a finicky flower and did not last long when cut and placed in a vase. So last spring I decided I would try to grow them myself. I planted them in beautiful pots and placed them on my front porch for all to see. They appeared to be in perfect condition when I brought them home from the garden supply. So I was overjoyed with the task of growing my favorite flower, and admiring its beauty everyday. I felt such pride when I looked at them, and couldn’t wait for others to see all my hard work begin to blossom.
Unfortunately, I’m not the best at keeping things alive, it’s miraculous that my dogs and children have survived this long! However, I loved those hydrangeas so much that I made sure to water them daily, put fertilizer in their soil, and even moved their position throughout the day so that they would always receive adequate amounts of sunlight. I did everything in my power to make sure they thrived.
Still, after about a week they slowly began to wilt. I couldn’t bear them dying so I began researching all the things that might be causing this condition. In an effort to save them, I frantically tried changing the soil, moving them into a different pot, using less water, using more water, I literally tried it all to save my beloved flowers. In a last ditch effort, I planted them in the ground, where I KNEW the soil was fertile, where I knew the sun would hit them just right, where I knew they would receive just the right amount of water. Much to my dismay, my efforts were futile, and it was too late for my beloved flowers.
No matter how perfect the conditions were to sustain them, it was far too late for them to survive. Due to my over care and attention to MY IDEA of what those flowers needed, and the inadequate drainage /release for the constant watering, they slowly began to rot below the surface, directly at the roots. In a few short days they died. I could have easily saved them had I looked at the pot and the roots from the start, but I didn’t. I looked only at the visible symptoms, and neglected the source until it was already too late.
You see-as a mother, wife and friend, I’ve so often struggled with exactly what I did to those blessed root rotten hydrangeas. While so diligently focusing on the surface, I can completely miss the ROOT of the problem.
Over-care of an issue can be just as destructive as neglect. We can pour on our solutions to render the surface beautiful, all the while we are merely over-watering an issue whose roots are bound up in poor drainage.
What I’m learning is that when a problem presents itself in my loved ones or myself, whether it be gossip, lies, addiction, offense, insecurity, this list of ‘dying flowers’ could go on, that rather than wasting my time watering what is dry on the surface, I must always look to the root.
“….rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.” Colossians 2:7
The source of every DEEP ROOTED struggle is in our identity. When we know WHOSE we are, we can never be rotted away. When our identity is ROOTED in Christ, though our surface may go through seasons of struggle, and we may not always bloom those vibrant shades in our petals, beneath the surface, our roots are alive and growing far deeper than what the eye can see. Though our flowers may wither away, the righteous will ALWAYS live to bloom another day.