Just before the St. Johns River bridge on my interstate commute, there is a low, straight, swampy stretch of road. The Lake Monroe shoreline follows along the east side of the interstate and on the west sits shallow water with lily pads, swamps, and wild plant life. Along this borderland from country into city, morning traffic can be at a crawl as you near Orlando suburbs unless it is during the summer vacation months.
A few summers ago I gradually found myself becoming more observant after watching the trees along my drive, and one day I discovered large pale pink flowers during a brief glimpse to the west as I was negotiating traffic along this shallow land. The flowers were closed and sleeping that evening when I drove home so I began to regularly watch for the blooms.
Within a few days, the morning traffic wasn’t as thick allowing me to look more closely, and I discovered large wild fields of these pink flowers faced east fully open and almost glowing in the morning light. They rest on an army of seemingly tall stalks that sit unseen under vine-like leaves. I drove along in wonder at how many of these beautiful blooms were in view realizing that in the three-and-a-half years of this drive, I had never been conscious of seeing these flowers that have overtaken the wild lowland before the bridge.
Most days I drive through at the same time, but sometimes I will go in earlier or later depending on my work schedule or personal appointments. It took a few weeks of watching at different times to realize another pattern the pale pink blooms were displaying. The flowers would face to the east and begin to open as the sun burst over the horizon, and as morning woke the world, they would follow the sun along its skyward path.
The identity of these beauties turned out to be wild pink morning glories. No wonder their look and behavior had been reminiscent to me.
A few weeks ago, I read this quote and when we approach the Sabbath hours, find it draws my heart to the memory of so many wonderful things in nature.
“The Sabbath brings us into fellowship with the Creator. In the song of the bird, the sighing of the trees, and the music of the sea, we may still hear the voice of the One who talked with Adam in Eden. And as we see His power in nature, we find comfort, for the Word that created all things is also the One who speaks life to the soul. He 'who commanded light to shine out of darkness ... has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ'” 2 Corinthians 4:6.1
Call to Action
The wild morning glories quietly demonstrate that following the sun brings life and beauty to their form. In the same way, shouldn’t we seek to follow the glory in the face of Jesus who speaks life to the soul?
- Ellen G. White, Humble Hero (Nampa, Idaho: Pacific Press Publishing Association, 2009), 125.