By Wendy Langhans
The grocery stores are vibrantly colorful this week: multicolored Easter eggs, marshmallow Peeps, and, of course, foil-wrapped chocolates. The floral department is no exception – there are plenty of bouquet’s to choose from. And there, sitting serenly in the midst of this color explosion, are White Easter Lilies in their cellophane-wrapped pots.
When I was younger, the sight of those Easter lilies made me feel a bit confused. I remember reading what Jesus said in His “Sermon on the Mount”, “…Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” (Matt 6:28-29, NKJV). Those Easter lilies were pretty, but Solomon, the richest king in the history of Israel, was not going to be dressed in plain white robes. What piece of this puzzle was I missing?
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It was only when I came to southern California, and discovered our abundantly colorful wildflowers, that I began to understand.
Consider these local “lilies”. These are certainly fit for a king’s wardrobe:
When I learned that our local Mediterranean ecosystem is similar to that found in Israel, the pieces of the puzzle began to come together. All it took was a Google search of “Wildflowers Israel” to come up with the last piece. Aha! Those flowers aren’t white – they’re colorful! So THAT’S what He meant!
I finally realized the source of my confusion – I had my metaphors mixed up. Jesus was using a wildflower metaphor to symbolize God’s abundant provision for our needs. In constructing this metaphor, He used objects that were easily recognized by His local audience: Crown Anemone, maybe a red Poppy or two, or perhaps simply “the beauty of creation”. My mistake was mixing Jesus’ metaphor with that of the Easter Lily (Lilium longiflorum), which Christians use to symbolize the “purity, resurrection and new life.”
The solution to my confusion was obvious – I had to get my metaphors straightened out. In other words, get my ducks on the same page and remove the bee from my Easter bonnet. I hope you have an easier time of it than I’ve had.
Upcoming Outdoor Events:
Saturday, March 12 – Sunday, May 29, SCV Search & Rescue Trail Challenge 2011: 12 Weeks/12 Hikes. Click here for more information.
Saturday, May 14, 1 – 3 PM, Water-Loving Wildflowers at Elsmere Canyon. The small steam in Elsmere Canyon has its own special set of wildflowers. Savor the cool shade and its floral inhabitants on this easy hike. Meet at the Whitney Canyon parking lot. For directions and trail maps, click here.
Trail Maintenance Schedule. Come join our volunteers as they help maintain our trails. Contact Steve at firstname.lastname@example.org for time and place.
Wednesday mornings, April 6, 13, 20, 27.
Saturday mornings, April 9, 23.
For a glimpse of our local flowering plants, check out the Facebook page, “90 Days of Santa Clarita Valley Wildflowers”.
You can listen to stories like this every Friday morning at 7:10 a.m. on “The SCV Outdoor Report”, brought to you by your hometown radio station KHTS (AM1220) and by the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority.
NEW!!! Check out the new Facebook page – L.A. Mountains!!!