While I was praying recently, this phrase came up in my spirit: “Learn from the Sunflower.”
I thought hmmm, so I looked up more information and was surprised to discover a couple of interesting facts. For starters, the sunflower doesn’t actually follow the sun from morning till night like I had always thought. Instead, it sets it’s leaves to receive the sun in the East and then only partially follows it to full mass overhead. The sunflower then prepares by positioning itself again towards the East. In other words, it never fully looks to the West.
Lesson #1: The sunflower knows where the sun comes from and where it will return.
- Remember how the wise men found Jesus? “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him” (Matthew 2:1-2). And before Jesus left the earth, He told His disciples how to find Him again: “For as the lightning comes from the East and flashes to the West, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be” (Matthew 24:27).
- In both cases, Jesus wasn’t found where the sun sets, but in it’s place of rising.
Sadly, in our world today, it seems the sunflower may be more prepared for the return of Jesus than most people. Isaiah said, “I am the Lord, and there is no other; there is no God besides Me. I will gird you, though you have not known Me, that they may know from the rising of the sun to its setting that there is none besides Me. I am the Lord, and there is no other” (Isaiah 45:5-6).
I believe God intended for this clockwork (“from the rising of the sun to its setting”) to give us a vivid picture of how to live prepared.
- When we rise in the morning, our thoughts should be on the Lord.
- As the day continues, our thoughts should never wander far from Him.
- And each night, we should position ourselves again to rise with the “Son” in our hearts and on our minds.
Another interesting fact about the sunflower is its uniformity. A field of sunflowers is amazing to see. Every single flower is parallel to the others around it.
Lesson #2: Because of a central focus, sunflowers stay unified in purpose and position.
- The Bible says, “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity” (Psalm 133:1). In other words, it pleases God when His children are unified in purpose and poise.
- And the world stops to see it! Just like a field of uniformed sunflowers catches our eye, so does a group of believers united together.
There’s another type of sunflowers however, that are simply wild. They’re often found on the side of highways or in fields of corn or wheat, and labeled as weeds. These wild sunflowers still look for the sun, but not together. One is facing up, and another is facing down, while a few others are off in la-la-land just blowing in the wind. (Does this sound like people you know?)
The wild sunflower “looks” like the real deal, but watch its pattern of living and you’ll soon see the difference. The same is true for Christians. Paul said, “Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1). If we’d keep this goal in mind, the world would be amazed.
The bottom line is, we can learn a lot from nature– God’s created world. So remember… [bctt tweet=”STAY MINDFUL OF JESUS and NEVER GET DISTRACTED FROM YOUR PURPOSE.” via=”no”]