Matters of Sunshine and Shade

Yesterday I asked what lifted your inner flower, sunshine or shade. Thinking about certain of my friends whose moods definitely assert their preference, it makes me wonder why should we humans be any different from the flowers? God created both, right?

Let’s say sunshine represents a time in our lives when the “heat is on”. We’re under deadlines, trying to keep up with extra pressures. Do we wilt or do we thrive?

I’m laughing because having a little bit of panic-induced competence is often what I need to open my eyes to my potential. Give me a week with way too much to do and I get on overdrive, usually (not always!) accomplishing much more than I would have any other week.

Take this week. Our church is having VBS in the evenings, and I’m co-director. So I climb out of bed and get cracking on housework, the flowerbeds, organizing projects, fixing meals ahead, etc…all so I won’t be falling behind all week. If it were a normal week, I’d chill out in the A.M., fix a cup of tea and read emails, blog, do something with the girls, not a whole lot would get accomplished except maybe laundry, until afternoon when the clock’s ticking would shift my gears up a notch…well you get the point. Typical lazy summer morning.

Throw some “sunshine” in the mix and the stakes start to rise. Staying ahead becomes a game. (Maybe that’s why I procrastinate.) Anyway, it’s made me aware of how much one person can accomplish when they’re diligent with their time.

My “shady” side is the side that begs for simplicity. The side that is glad when fall arrives, and with it the routine schedules of homeschooling that often let me say “no” to extra activities. It’s a time of focusing on the more important matters of hearth and home, of family and my God-given calling of wife and mother.

I need the sunshine-shade cycle to thrive, much as we Christians need stretching and rejuvenating to grow. Oswald Chambers wrote, “A saint doesn’t know the joy of the Lord in spite of tribulation, but because of it.”

My mom used to have a picture of a pasture strewn with wildflowers. The caption below the field read: “It was as if God scattered color and told it to grow…”

Beautiful thought, isn’t it? He’s scattered us into place according to His sovereign plan. Rain or sunshine, He’s told us to grow.

How’s the growing going?

5 thoughts on “Matters of Sunshine and Shade”

  1. I guess, in a way, we are all like flowers.

    See, the Lord is my sunlight and with Him I will grow and mature into something beautiful.

    However, if I turn from the sunlight or placed in the shade for a long period of time, I will dwindle in die.

    Did that make any sense?

  2. What an amazing thought, Mary! You’re a brave woman taking on so much, but God has shown that you’re able to accomplish much. I, too, thrive under sunshine, but oftentimes my attitude takes a trip South. It’s an area I need to work on.

  3. Leticia, I love all the references to Jesus being our Light in the Bible…and really, we’re told to watch the lilies, how they toil and spin and their Heavenly Father takes care of them, right? Your comment made perfect sense, His kind of sunlight is essential to our growth…

    Georgiana, I relate to the attitude part. It’s funny though, that once you decide to jump in with both feet the blessings start pouring in. I was really hesitant last year to take on something as big as VBS, but we had so many awesome people volunteering that really my job as director was easy once the actual week of VBS started. The major work is in the planning and delegating. So this year it wasn’t so scary, and again, we had amazing volunteers. I’m so glad I took it on, but plan to pass the torch next year!

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