Monday, May 5, 2014
Savoring Wildflowers in Spring
Over the past month my wife and I have taken several weekend drives throughout different areas of the Texas Hill Country to enjoy the Spring wildflowers. My wife’s favorites are the Texas Bluebonnets. Spring is a refreshing time of year due to the dynamic colors of the flowers breaking out from the drab brown of Winter dormancy of the plants and trees. Recently I have seen a few pictures come up on friends’ Facebook pages of flowers and plants coming alive again up in Ohio and Illinois. They need the refreshing renewal of Spring even more than those of us here in Texas; as they had one of the coldest Winters in a long time. (Makes one wonder about the global warming theorists?? I will leave it at that- think about it).
Flowers call for attention. You can rush by the flowers and miss them and many people do. I feel those who rush by miss out on one of life’s savoring pleasures. On our drives we took country roads around where websites had sightings of bluebonnets. We took our time driving along to spot the flowers and if someone behind was in a hurry we simply pulled off to let them go and kept enjoying our wildflower drive. Where we found open fields of flowers we would stop and take time to meander around in the fields with our cameras taking pictures. The pictures this week come from our flower excursions.
With wildflowers and any flowers there is first of all the big picture enjoyment of gazing at the big picture of the total landscape. Seeing the array of colors mixed with green against the backdrop of the blue skies is an awesome reminder for me personally of the great God artist behind nature. Then I move from the big picture to focusing in on the individual flowers. I am amazed at the intensity of color and the delicate makeup of the flower itself. These close observations make me wonder why is there such a variety of flowers? We went primarily looking for bluebonnets and this year was a great year to find them. At the same time we also enjoyed a variety of yellow, orange, pick and purple flowers along the drive. The variety again drives my mind back to thinking about a Creator God behind the diverse colors and variety of flowers. Of course that thought stems from my belief system. I simply feel the most reasonable explanation for such awesome beauty, complexity and diversity is found in positing a God behind nature. The atheist I guess in their belief, can stand and wonder at the infinitesimal probabilities of random chance chaos popping these flowers into existence out of nothing. So no matter what your belief system is you can still be amazed at the innate beauty of wildflowers in nature.
Taking the time to break out of our busy life to drive around was a relaxing way to de-stress from the stressors of life. We came home rested with a renewed inner joy from seeing the beauty of creation. Maybe you have never taken time to do country drives or going out to nature parks in the Springtime. If you are looking for a new way to break out of the rut of your same old, same old ok life give it a try. Simply check on the internet for parks in your area to visit. Do a search for what wildflowers are natural to your state and area and see where there have seen sightings. Then take a weekend morning or afternoon drive to savor the wildflowers of your areas.
Here are a few websites on wildflowers to explore. The first is the section of the U.S. Forest service website on wildflowers. Then of course being here in Texas I list two websites about wildflowers here in Texas. We live in large diverse country so the Forest Service website showcases information on wildflowers in each geographic area.
U.S. Forest Service - http://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers
Texas Wild Flowers - http://texas.wildflowersightings.org
Texas Blue Bonnets - http://www.bluebonnetlove.com
Reflection: Do you take time to notice the Springtime flowers? Do you find yourself too busy for that? Maybe that is a sign you are too busy. Slow down and take time to smell the roses and be awed by the natural beauty of the flowers in your local area.